At Edge Fund, all our members can be decision makers. A group of volunteers within the membership make up our Facilitating Group, who make decisions about the day to day running of the organisation. Our wider membership make decisions on structural changes to the organisation, and alongside previously funded groups make decisions on who we fund. This includes rating applications by email or post and attending a final meeting where funds are given out. Decision making for a round lasts around 2 months, with a review meeting a month afterwards. The time commitment of members could be around 2 days over this period, with time spent reading applications and one or two meetings. There is a lot of flexibility, for example, whilst we would like members to come to the funding day and review meeting, this is not mandatory. We recognise that members may only have time to look at a small number of applications, or may not be able to rate every round. Members tell us how much time they’d like to contribute and we work around that.
We encourage members to donate monthly to Edge Fund to enable us to continue giving out grants to grassroots groups across the UK & Ireland, although we recognise that not every member is financially able to do so. You can join Edge Fund here.
Once you’ve become a member, there are several other activities you might want to get involved in:
Community Committees and Advisory Groups
Our Community Committees are made up of members who come from a particular community and lived experience of oppression, such as women and oppressed genders, LGBTQI people and those from low income and working class backgrounds. They are the first to see and score the applications relating to these experiences of oppression and give advice to the wider membership from their knowledge and experience. They keep an eye on the process to help ensure it is as fair as possible and may also be asked for their help to reach out to communities and networks, for example, advising on wording of leaflets or being a contact point.
Similarly, the Advisory Groups are made up of members actively working on issues like environmentalism or systemic change. They are the first to see and score applications relating to issues they are actively involved in. The Advisory Groups are based on issues rather than being specific to communities.
The Facilitating Group (FG) take some pressure off members by doing admin work behind the scenes, such as preparing agendas and proposals for meetings. The FG give support and direction to Edge Fund staff, perhaps by looking over articles and leaflet text, or helping to organise meetings such as finding suitable venues. Other things might come up, like opportunities to attend or speak at events or issues relating to donations and banking, which staff and the FG will discuss. All decisions made by the FG are minuted and can be reviewed by members.
This is a demanding role, but we can accomodate people giving less or more committment depending on their circumstances. We are keen that the FG is representative of the membership.
We welcome members to join the FG. Please contact [email protected] or one of the Edge Fund staff to talk more about this.
Working with other funds to encourage and support more democratic, accountable and transparent processes, plus supporting our staff with fundraising initiatives. You can read about this group’s activities here. To get involved, please contact [email protected]
Creating new working groups
We are keen to develop more working groups on tasks such as communications and skills sharing between members and grantees. Do let us know if this is something you would be interested in making happen.
It may be that membership isn’t the right fit for your background and experience - but there are still other ways you can be involved and support Edge Fund! We rely on monthly and one-off donors, as well as people sharing information about Edge Fund in their networks and to groups who can apply for funding.
If you would like to regularly donate to Edge Fund so we can continue support grassroots groups, you can do so here.
Please also get in touch to let us know more about you, so we can work out how you can best support - [email protected]