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All-Party Parliamentary Group launches to encourage philanthropy

All-Party Parliamentary Group launches to encourage philanthropy

An All-Party Parliamentary Group has launched to create a platform to encourage more philanthropy, and to discuss the role of modern philanthropy and social investment in the UK.

The APPG on Philanthropy and Social Investment is chaired by Rushanara Ali, the MP for Bethnal Green and Bow, a member of the Treasury select committee, and supported by the Beacon Collaborative and Philanthropy Impact. The new group aims to connect parliamentarians with philanthropists, social investors, trusts and foundations, to share research and help tackle the country’s big social challenges.

At the reception, the APPG released Philanthropy in the UK, a report researched by the Beacon Fellowship Charitable Trust and funded by Philanthropy Impact.

It states that while ‘there are many stories that highlight the positive contribution philanthropic donations are making in our communities and our society… The public and political narrative around philanthropy seems ambivalent at best.’

The APPG’s role, it adds, includes addressing this ambivalence, ‘by providing accurate information, a forum to debate these important concerns and undertaking a work programme that seeks to actively reshape the positive capacities of private philanthropy and social investment’.

Over the next decade, it wants to see a role for philanthropy that is:

  • Bigger: with more private assets being donated to public benefit causes.
  • More diverse: the broadest range of people who can donate.
  • More responsible: a reshaped civic contract so that those who can, feel it’s their responsibility to give more.
  • More transparent: donations and giving to be more transparent, accountable and understood.

To this end, it states, the APPG’s work programme will cover the themes of leadership and governance, representation, public policy and press, technology, and new types of giving. It will hold events ranging from public forums to smaller roundtable discussions around four times a year, including one major annual event bringing together stakeholders involved and interested in its work.

According to the Chair, if 10% more of Britain’s super-rich matched their charitable peers, it could raise an extra £2 billion for good causes in the UK.

Speaking at the reception for the launch, Rushanara Ali MP said:

“At a time when we face big social divides it is more important than ever to encourage philanthropic giving and look at how we can support communities and charities who contribute so much to our country.

“If we can encourage more of Britain’s super-rich to become philanthropists – just one more for every ten already giving – it would raise £2 billion for youth activities, support for homeless people, tackling loneliness, and many other positive programmes.

“Philanthropists are a great positive force in the UK and should continue to be harnessed for our common good, not as a substitute, but complementary to state provision.” 

The APPG’s Vice Chairs are crossbench peer Baroness Prashar, Labour’s Diana Johnson, and Conservative Peer Lord Wasserman. The other officers are Lord Wei, Susan Elan Jones, Lord Janvrin, Baroness Pitkeathley, and Baroness Royall of Blaisdon.


Melanie May is a journalist and copywriter specialising in writing both for and about the charity and marketing services sectors since 2001. She can be reached via

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