To mark its 200th anniversary, Cork Chamber today launched a six-month community funding drive to raise €200,000, in partnership with Social Innovation Fund Ireland (SIFI). The Cork Chamber 1819 Fund will benefit Cork community initiatives with a social, environmental or economic impact.
Cork Chamber is the first Irish Chamber of Commerce to launch an initiative of this kind and has a fundraising target of €100,000, with the goal of a combined funding total of €200,000. The Department of Rural and Community Development matches all philanthropic donations to Social Innovation Fund Ireland, euro for euro, from the Dormant Accounts Fund.
Fundraising will take place over six months from January to July 2019, after which an open call for applications will be made through Social Innovation Fund Ireland. New and established not-for-profit or social enterprises across Cork may apply for funding of projects that are innovative, address a critical social issue such as health, inclusion, local economy, and environment, among others. The successful projects will be announced at an awards ceremony in November 2019. Previous Social Innovation Fund Ireland awardees include projects ranging from Cork Life Centre to Cork ARC cancer support to Irish Community Rapid Response.
Speaking about the partnership, President of Cork Chamber, Bill O’Connell said: “This funding drive with Social Innovation Fund Ireland is one of the cornerstones of our anniversary programme, marking 200 years by raising €200,000. Social innovation projects have a hugely important role to play in local communities and this project gives everyone a chance to become a philanthropist.”
“We are encouraging businesses of all sizes, as well as individuals, to take ownership of this partnership and contribute to the fund, thereby making a personal investment in initiatives that will build community resilience and ensure longevity for the future, making Cork a better place to live and work as we start our next 200 year journey.”
CEO of SIFI, Deirdre Mortell added: “We are delighted to partner with Cork Chamber, building on our work on the national Resilient Communities Fund. Given Cork Chamber’s milestone anniversary, it is the perfect time for members to strengthen their role in Cork’s great tradition of philanthropy and to start laying strong foundations for future generations by supporting innovative social enterprises and charities in the region.
“The successful projects will benefit hugely from this fund, which will allow them to raise their profile locally and nationally, gain key knowledge through the SIFI Accelerator programme and expand their reach and capabilities to the benefit of their communities. To date SIFI have backed over 80 social innovations around Ireland with over €14m in philanthropic funding.”
Those interested in supporting the Cork Chamber 1819 fund can do so via gofundme.com/cork-chamber-1819-fund or by contacting Cork Chamber directly in relation to corporate donations.