STEP Sussex conference  

In June, our Chief Executive Kevin Richmond was delighted to be invited, with ex-trustee and retired solicitor, Patricia Woolgar, to speak at the STEP Sussex summer conference at the American Express Community Stadium in Brighton. It was an opportunity to spread the word about our work to an audience that we know we can really support in their work.

“I came to fully understand what Sussex Community Foundation does when I was involved in setting up the Brenda Ford Fund,” says Patricia. Brenda Ford was a victim of domestic abuse and Patricia was appointed by the Office of the Public Guardian to represent her, when she was still alive. When Brenda died, part of her estate was used to set up the Brenda Ford Fund, which was set up to support charities to help other victims of domestic violence.

“Sussex Community Foundation is a facilitator,” says Patricia. “It enables individuals, families, businesses and trustees to set up or transfer an existing fund which is then managed by the Foundation, who use highly respected investment managers to manage those funds.”

The Foundation’s team is based in Lewes and makes grants on behalf of their donors to small charities and not-for-profit groups across East, West Sussex and Brighton & Hove, working across a huge range of charitable activities (from rural isolation, homelessness, mental health issues and disability etc).

“Donors then either choose which charities they wish to benefit or a grants panel will apply funds in accordance with the donor’s letter of wishes. All grants are approved by the Foundation’s trustees to give added reassurance.” Comprehensive due diligence is carried out on the charities making the applications and a follow-up process ensures grants are spent appropriately.

“Donor-advised funds are becoming more and more of a popular way for your client’s to maximise their charitable giving. It enables donors to have the flexibility  to give to a wide range of different causes of their choosing, without having to worry about the administrative burden or its cost, or the often time consuming process of finding suitable beneficiaries,” says Patricia.

If you or one of your clients would like to know more, please do call Toni Darton at Sussex Community Foundation on 01273 409440 or email Toni

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