Posted on April 09, 2018
The Farmleigh Fund is the first of our Unsung Heroes campaign that will run from April 9th to May 19th. Over the course of the next six weeks, we will profile some of our anonymous Donor Advised Funds that are creating real social impact in Ireland highlighting the ways in which our donors have set up funds, how they work and what they want to achieve from their fund at The Community Foundation for Ireland.
The Farmleigh Fund, an anonymous family fund, was established in 2016 as a term fund at The Community Foundation for Ireland. As the Farmleigh Fund is a term fund they will spend down the total amount they have allocated to the fund over the next 10 years. The fund has committed to providing €350,000 per annum in grants to the community and voluntary sector in Ireland.
The Farmleigh Fund was set up when the family received a windfall gain after the sale of shares. The objective of the fund is to make a sustainable improvement in people’s lives in Ireland, the fund is committed to doing this through providing funding to projects and organisations that seek to address the root cause of issues that negatively affect society. The family fund has a particular interest in supporting advocacy and progressive change in public policy and legislation.
Some such areas where the fund has invested in change is their funding to the Children's Rights Alliance so that they can continue to produce their Annual Report Card which tracks policy delivery for children and young people in Ireland. Similarly, the fund has supported the work of the Irish Penal Reform Trust to examine human rights conditions of prisoners in Ireland.
This fund is a prime example of how philanthropy, when utilised at its best, can support strategic initiatives in targeted areas to help in addressing selected societal challenges. The spend down nature of the term fund allows the donors to support a relatively small number of targeted initiatives and to provide them with multi-annual funding to really delve into systemic issues and create lasting change.
Setting up a fund is a unique and personal experience for each of our donors whether they are individuals or families. No two funds are the same; while we often convene donors to strengthen the power of their giving each fund is a reflection of that donor’s values and their commitment to providing tangible change.
You can follow the Unsung Heroes campaign on social media using #UnsungHeroes and you can find us on any of our four social sites below: