What is the gritty reality of social investment? If I were being cruel I would start by misquoting a saying most frequently credited to the ancient Chinese philosopher Confucius “Life is really simple, but lawyers insist on making it complicated. “
When you invest socially, is your intention to gain or give? Premal Shah, President [and co-founder] of the social lending platform Kiva, asked this loaded question to a packed audience at this year’s Marmalade session on people-powered social investment.
Who should be a social investor? Should social investment be the preserve of big financial institutions, charitable foundations, large companies and high-net-worth individuals? Or should this be accessible to regular people who identify with a social issue or a community and want to do everything they can to help?
HM Treasury recently announced that from 30th November this year, it will remove tax reliefs of 30% or more for community energy projects. This means they will no longer be eligible for Social Investment Tax Relief (SITR) as well as Enterprise Investment Scheme (EIS) and Seed Enterprise Investment Scheme (SEIS).
Southmead is an out of town estate, a few miles from the centre of Bristol. It’s a great place with a real buzz and lots of positives, but it also has its challenges. Southmead has the lowest life expectancy in Bristol, more than 9 years lower than the neighbouring ward of Henleaze, and we’re involved in many projects to try and address that. We want to improve people’s wellbeing and hopefully have an impact on their life expectancy.
Early attempts to introduce payment by results into public services may have been met with scepticism, but the coalition government made important progress in developing new commissioning mechanisms that focus on paying for outcomes rather than simply paying for services, and showed a willingness to learn. Read more in The Guardian >>
The general election is approaching. As campaigning intensifies, attention is shifting back to local constituencies. For social investment to maintain its support, it needs to be able to show how it is making an impact on the ground in constituencies across the country. And it needs key decision-makers, like MPs, to know how and where it is making a difference. New data we’ve obtained suggests that there are already 70 different constituencies across the country benefitting as a result of our social investments - so there’s a story to be told.