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24 September 2014 – minutes

Communications Group Meeting, Wednesday 24th September 2014

Present: Nim, Yula, Susan, Sophie

Apologies: Mark, Aderonke

Developing an Edge Fund Communications Strategy

  1. Aims
  • People understanding what EF does and what EF is about
  • Attract people who meet our criteria
    • Potential applicants
    • Potential members
    • Potential donors, particularly those who share EF values
  • Challenging current narratives within the fields of funding and philanthropy that there are no alternatives
  • Promoting EF as an example of a different model of grassroots-based fundraising


  1. Audience
  • Potential applicants
  • Potential members
    • Those with high net worth
    • Regular donators giving small amounts monthly
  • Funders and philanthropists
    • Having conversation and debate
  • Grassroots
    • Natural allies, i.e. grassroots groups
    • Policymakers
    • Model of distribution of resources


  1. Current Situation of Edge Fund
  • What does EF do? What is its mission?

“Edge Fund is a grant-making body with a difference. We support efforts to … (please fill in the rest) end the imbalance of wealth and power – and give those we aim to help a say in where the money goes.”


  • Main functions of Edge Fund:
    • Making grants to grassroots social change projects
    • Developing and promoting new models of democratic grant making
    • Bringing people of different backgrounds to learn about each other’s issues and support each other’s work


  • Where does Edge Fund operate?
    • The whole of Ireland, Scotland, Wales and England


  • What does the Communications Group want to achieve in the next 12 months?
    • Have more members talking about EF from their diverse perspectives in a collective voice
    • Have more awareness of and engagement with what EF wants to do
    • Be the go-to people/organisation for information, resources and connection to grassroots organising
    • Be where people come to find out more about democratic grant making, e.g. academics, NGOs, foundations, individual philanthropists


  1. PEST Analysis

These are the political, economic, social and technological events/issues/currents that Edge Fund needs to be aware of and that may have an impact on EF’s work and objectives.

  • Political:
    • The radical independence movement in Scotland – EF’s position there could be interesting
    • 2015 general election
    • TTIP
    • NHS
    • More cuts in effect
    • Focus E15 Housing Campaign
    • Islamophobia
    • Immigration/migrants
  • What does EF mean by systemic change? Is EF presenting a hopeful alternative that we can figure it out together?


  • Economic:
    • Facing more cuts
    • Less individual giving, more grants by foundations, new foundations being set up
  • Groups funded by EF retaining autonomy in their use of funds, and have a say in how EF uses theirs.


  • Social: need to discuss online/at meeting – not sure what this section means/meant


  • Technological:
  • Social media and clicktivism as part of the increasing importance of digital activism – how EF can counter this Need to discuss more perhaps


  1. Key Messages
  • To achieve in 12 months’ time:
    • Hope, unity, redistribution of social power and grassroots change from below, direct impact, radical – tackling the roots of injustice
    • And determining which aspects of our key message are applicable to our audience/constituency, i.e. members, applicants, people with high net worth, regular donators, funders and philanthropists, grassroots.
  1. Next Steps
  • Determine how to access our audiences
  • Work out where to find them
  • What are our messages for each group and how do we frame those messages?
  • Setting targets and tasks for the next 12 months
  1. Next Comms Grp meeting – tbc.
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