Give Local!

I went to the launch of CityForum Brighton last night, and have just posted this very quick summary of an idea I had the other day. It’s a project based around making connections: 

  • Enabling people to give small monthly amounts to local organisations (supporting local giving) and
  • Enabling businesses to give in-kind or cash support to local organisation (supporting local CSR)

by providing for charities and givers:

  • the mechanism for setting up monthly giving (local organisations are usually not set up to solicit small regular donations and don’t have chuggers)
  • a way of identifying local organisations for your support (post code or key word searchable database)
  • a way for local organisations to mount a campaign (charity profile page managed by them, front page featuring specific charity or campaign each month)
  • data about the issues in brighton and about the organisations (based on public, charity and open data – focusing on factually provable trends, issues, etc and giving detailed information about charities to reassure givers that they are kosher, this would be both in terms of registration and accountability, but also ‘you gave us £500 and we did X with it’ type feedback)

by providing for businesses as givers:

  • use the same back end to provide a way of linking up local businesses with organisations that ‘fit’ them – in terms of age, profile, geography, lifestyle
  • enable charities to search for businesses that may ‘fit’ them in terms of support for specific awareness or fundraising campaigns
  • provide a more human ‘matching service’ as part of a programme encouraging CSR among local businesses


I know there has been talk about things like this in the past by the Directory of Social Change who were looking to use GuideStar data for this, that the Community Foundation Network run something similar where donations go direct to Sussex Giving who then distribute the funds, and some work on linking local traders to local organisations, but do not know how far any of these got.

It seems to me that Brighton people really relate to Brighton as a place, however much they are or are not involved directly in their community and that this is a very good basis on which to build a Brighton Giving project.

Back end tech could be provided by e.g. Virgin Money Giving or Just Giving or similar. 

Development in conjunction with both the Community & Voluntary Sector, the Business sector and potential givers would been needed to make sure it serves all people well.



If there is any mileage in this suggestion we could bid into the new £10m Innovation in Giving fund being managed by NESTA but would need firm commitments from partners on design, their contribution, support and ideas on long term sustainability.

Who would like to work on this with me? Who else should we talk to? What could this idea look like when finished? What other examples of this kind of thing exist? Does the whole thing already exist?! What are the pitfalls? How can we design it so it is effective and cost-effective?

All comments welcome!

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