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City Bridge Trust and UBS are launching the fourth round of the Stepping Stones Fund

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The Stepping Stones Fund is a unique social investment readiness facility for charitable organisations in Greater London.

City Bridge Trust and UBS are launching the fourth round of the Stepping Stones Fund to provide targeted support in the form of grants to organisations that wish to prepare themselves for social investment in order to improve their social outcomes.  

The fund invites the participation of charitable organisations working with beneficiaries in the Greater London area. Interested organisations can apply for funding under two strands to 

1. obtain capacity building support that will help them better access social investment in the future 
2. pilot new ways, ideas or business models aiming for better social outcomes 

The Stepping Stones Fund was created in recognition of the gap between the grant finance available for organisations and the requirements of an organisation that seeks to secure social investment through the City of London Corporation Social Investment Fund or any other social investor. Considering, social investment might be an appropriate financing route for some social sector organisations which are able to generate sufficient revenue. By providing support under the two strands, the Stepping Stones Fund wants to help de-risk any future investment. 


This is the fourth call for proposals of the Stepping Stones Fund, after three successful rounds, which saw 49 charities awarded a total of £2.1million for investment readiness projects.

What applicants can gain: 
* Tailor made grants up to £50,000  
* Financing for the duration of up to 18 months 
* Interaction with social investment and investment readiness experts and service providers 
* The opportunity to test the viability of new models of delivering outcomes and thus gather evidence and be better equipped to build a sustainable organisation that can bid for contracts more successfully    
* Long term support from a fund that can accompany an organisation’s strategic development to become sustainable and investment ready 

What is expected of applicants: 
Interested organisations will go through a 3-stage selection process: 

1. Basic eligibility check online 
2. Application form online 
3. Detailed proposal and personal interview 

Those who meet the eligibility criteria will be asked to fill in the online application form and submit additional documents. Shortlisted applicants will be invited to prepare a detailed proposal and attend a personal interview to present their proposals to a Selection Panel composed of City Bridge Trust and UBS professionals. Final decisions about funding will be announced within about 4 months of the application deadline. 


The deadline for applications is May 10, 2017. Completed application forms and the required additional documents must be submitted by this date. 

The Stepping Stones Fund team will offer open information sessions to interested organisations on the following dates: April 4th, April 26th and May 4th. Please, follow the website for registration and exact time and venue information. 

Further information: 
Detailed information about the Stepping Stones Fund and the application process can be found on the City Bridge Trust website under Stepping Stones Fund

You can also send your enquiries to the following e-mail address steppingstones@cityoflondon.gov.uk

Category: Invest