Please review the funded projects under the grant theme Life Changing Transitions.

We are always looking to receive applications which use memorable, innovative, and or creative ways of delivering financial life skills which will make a lasting impact on the way people think, behave and manage their money.  

Check out what the Trustees and the Grant Advisory Panel particularly liked about the projects featured.

The Zinthiya Ganeshpanchan Trust, a registered charity was established in 2009 in Leicester. They support people to live without the fear of violence and abuse, providing holistic practical support by helping people transform their lives through education, skills development and employment opportunities. 

The original project we intended to fund in January 2020, was to provide tailored 1:1 support for 78 people, who had become homeless to maintain a new housing tenancy. The aims were to empower and change their relationship with money, maximise their income and reduce their expenditure and understand what priority bills to pay first.  However as the Covid-19 pandemic unfolded in the Spring of 2020, the scope of the project changed to deliver immediate crisis support to homeless people in Leicester. 

Leicester City Council housed around 200 homeless and street homeless people during lockdown. The Zinthyia Trust project team continued to stay open to support this most vulnerable group who often are digitally excluded or with no phone or phone credit to access help. The team worked in partnership with the City Council to directly support 113 vulnerable people to maintain new tenancies, providing 4 hours covid-safe 1:1 support to each person. This was particularly challenging in Leicester as the city remained in local lockdown for most of 2020.   

We particularly liked that the Zinthyia Trust based in Leicester, tirelessly kept going to deliver to vulnerable people intensive support in a city which remained in local lockdown for most of 2020.  

Access2Advice is a Community Interest Company, established in 2007 in Derby. Their goal is to reduce re-offending through innovative means by working to ensure reliable and effective support for decreasing debt, improving financial capability and developing employment skills for offenders.

The original aim of this project was to help prepare offenders nearing the end of their sentences learn financial capability skills to support transitioning back into mainstream society. Prior to covid restrictions Access 2 Advice was able to support a group of 15 offenders at HMP Lincoln.  This session covered housing debt, magistrate court debt, debt management & avoidance, budgeting and choosing and comparing utility providers.  Unfortunately the project could not completed, when all prisons closed access to civilians due to the Covid-19 lockdown in March 2020.  

With our agreement and support  Access 2 Advice was able to re-direct their efforts to support and train 33 newly released prisoners on probation in the community.  They delivered an ASDAN Level 1 programme 'Keeping Track of Your Money' comprising of 10 guided learning hours. Following delivery of this programme Access 2 Advice have been able to secure funding for the trainer costs for courses to be delivered in 2021 to newly released prisoners. 

We particularly liked how Access 2 Advice's project was managed and how it adapted due to Covid restrictions from delivery in prison to supporting those on probation in the community.

Quaker Social Action was founded over 150 years ago by the religious group Quakers. Today they are an independent charity inspired by Quaker values, which guide them to deliver services with compassion and dignity. They take social action by providing practical solutions for people facing the multiple and varied impacts of poverty in East London and across the UK.  

This project researched, piloted and delivered 10 workshops covering issues believed to be most useful for post-bereavement finances. 155 people attended the workshops, including carers, older people, and some professionals involved in end-of-life services. 

To support the workshop delivery, a booklet was designed to use as a resource, covering: funeral planning, benefits, state support for funeral costs, housing, probate, inheritance tax, debts, pensions and more. 

One of the key lessons learnt, was people benefit most from support with post-bereavement finances if they can access guidance before it becomes a reality. Those gaining most were carers or older people willing and able to think about their own, or their family member's death. Older people felt that they gained greater confidence in being able to discuss death and finances with their children.

We particularly liked that Quaker Social Action's Down to Earth project tackled a sensitive time of life which is often overlooked.

SOS Domestic Abuse Projects is based in Southend, Essex, and are a registered charity, established in 1997. They run several projects designed to support those who have experienced domestic abuse in all its manifestations. 

This project delivered a Quaker Social Action one day Financial Capability Support train the trainer course in Chelmsford.  It was attended by 11 domestic abuse practitioners from three refuges across Essex: Changing Pathways in Basildon; Colchester Women’s Aid and Southend on Sea Domestic Abuse Projects. 

Following this the practitioners have implemented this learning through 1:1 support sessions and recovery groups. The training and resources provided have enabled staff to take a more pro-active and preventative approach to clients and their money management, especially for those residents preparing to leave the refuge. Before the training, staff would address benefit maximisation, evictions and priority debts. Following the training the financial support plans include a far wider range of support including energy saving, budget planning, saving for future goals and support in identifying appropriate online and face to face specialist financial advice. In the 11 month funding period, 217 survivors were given safety and support plans which included a financial support plan. 

We particularly liked that SOS Domestic Abuse Projects evidenced a strong collaborative partnership that delivered the Quaker Social Action training across the three refuges.

Create is a registered charity based in London which believes in the power of the creative arts to transform lives. They focus on engaging society’s most disadvantaged & vulnerable people in inspiring, sustainable programmes in areas where provision is poor & engagement in the arts is low.

Our funding supported Inside Change a financial literacy and drama project, which was designed by Create to upskill offenders approaching release. Create delivered two pilot projects with HMP&YOI Isis in London and HMP Swansea in Wales reaching a total of 33 participants through 30 half-day workshops.

Inside Change used finance activities, script writing and drama to enable offenders to explore finance, discussing ethics and issues around money in a stimulating and thought provoking, creative way. Unlike traditional courses, this interactive project enabled participants to develop financial capability, social skills and confidence. They developed their financial literacy skills via a range of activities including budgeting tasks, discussing loans, bank accounts, interest, needs versus wants. Through collaborative activities, and under the guidance of Create’s drama artist they developed ideas to create a plot and subsequently a script around the financial themes and subjects explored. Both projects culminated in the recording of radio plays. Under the guidance of Create’s sound engineer, the participants rehearsed and recorded their scripts in the form of a radio play, which was then broadcast via National Prison Radio.

We particularly liked that Create had a positive impact reaching people in a very challenging environment. 

Anybody Can Cook is a Community Interest Company, operating since 2008, which is based in Warminster, Wiltshire. Their projects engage individuals, promote health, reduce isolation and build communities through the sharing of food, knowledge and the practical development of cooking skills. 

Our funding enabled 11 Heat and Eat cookery workshops to be delivered over a 6 month period across towns and villages in Wiltshire for 125 elderly and other people experiencing a life changing transition. At each session, participants were involved in the practical preparation of several dishes, requiring social interaction and peer support. The facilitator and the groups shared money saving tips for cooking for one, alternative cheaper ingredients for planning meals on a low budget, using up leftovers to reduce waste, and how to save time and energy when cooking. 

Participants were signposted to local agencies who could support further on reducing energy bills such as Wiltshire Warm and Safe. Each participant took home a free slow cooker. Other funders supported this project to purchase the slow cookers, including local rotary clubs, Waitrose and the Aviva Community Fund.  At each location there was some element of 'in kind' support offered including venues, volunteers and support workers.

We particularly liked that Anybody Can Cook collaborated with local funders. There was good engagement within the group including high levels of peer to peer support.

The Nehemiah Project is a registered charity that has been working for over 23 years in south London with men recovering from drug and alcohol addictions, most of whom are either prisoners or ex-offenders. 

Our funding supported the delivery of money management modules as part of the wider Recovery Programme. 36 men were supported by their key workers to learn budgeting skills and strategies to manage money and debts. The CAP Money Course resources were used to support the training. 

Outcomes for the 36 men included feeling more confident about managing their finances after they moved into more independent living accommodation. Other positive outcomes were that they developed increased financial resilience skills which enabled them to feed themselves on a budget, buy affordable clothes and manage general living costs. 

We particularly liked that The Nehemiah Project demonstrated a good level of engagement with clients living with challenging circumstances.

Geese is a registered charity that has been working for over 30 years, they are based in Birmingham. Their team comprises of theatre practitioners who present interactive theatre and facilitate drama-based groupwork, staff training and consultation for the probation service, prisons, young offender institutions, youth offending teams, secure hospitals and related agencies throughout the UK and abroad.

We funded delivery of two interactive performances of 'Broke' including follow up workshops at HMP Featherstone and HMP Dovegate to over 60 prisoners. 

‘Broke’ explored the issues of prison debt and the follow on workshop posed questions about how this issue might impact on prisoners' family and friends and how individuals might deal with debt or avoid it in the first place. 

We particularly liked that this Geese project tackled money issues for those in prison, which can be particularly difficult and misunderstood.

Positive Action is an independent Scottish charity based in Glasgow. Their mission is to empower refugees, to rebuild their lives after the removal of basic human rights such as liberty, refuge, shelter and the right to work.

Our funding supported the delivery of  15 x 4 hour Financial Literacy workshops to 155 disadvantaged individuals in refugee and BME communities living in Glasgow, which hosts the second highest number of refugees in the UK. Workshops were delivered in 4 main languages, English, Russian, Mandarin and Cantonese with support for over 15 other languages. 

100% of learners felt increased confidence to handle their finances better, appreciating being taught from someone who speaks their own language, and knowing where to turn to for further advice.

We particularly liked that Positive Action was sensitive to the needs and cultural diversity in their local area.