A FUNDING MECHANISM TO HELP ENVIRONMENTAL ORGANISATIONS RESPOND QUICKLY TO CRISES OR OPPORTUNITIES
EFN established a ‘Rapid Response Fund’ in 2018 to support groups trying to seize unexpected opportunities or respond to unanticipated crises with a potentially significant environmental outcome.
Over the years, leaders in the environment sector have told EFN that having rapid access to funds would strengthen environmental work in the UK. Quick access to funds would help organisations respond swiftly to unexpected crises and opportunities in ways they have often been unable to do due to a lack of readily available resources.
Based on funder feedback, we decided not to attempt to create a pooled fund, but instead to coordinate a group of interested funders who are open to receiving applications that have been screened and then recommended by a group of reviewers.
Applications are accepted on a rolling basis and reviewed by a small advisory group of funders. Those that meet the criteria set out in the application guidelines are shared with all participating funders. They are encouraged to respond quickly, funding the applicants directly but letting the other funders know how much they have awarded (which they can do anonymously if they wish) so that the total amount outstanding can be tracked. The maximum amount that can currently be requested is £25,000, and funders can make donations of any size towards the total amount requested.
Organisations that receive funding through the RRF are asked to submit a short report after six months, detailing what they did with the funding, what they achieved, any learnings, and what will happen next. These reports are submitted to EFN, which then passes them on to funders in order to simplify and streamline the reporting process.
More information for funders interested in participating, including examples of initiatives that have been supported by the RRF, can be found here.