Introducing two special partnerships: The Movements Trust and the University of Manchester

As we celebrate our first birthday (hooray!), we are pleased to introduce two incredible new partnerships. We hope that these are the first of many that will help us as we build our movement towards a community-centred future! 

  1. One World Together x The Movements Trust

In April, we joined ‘the movement of movements’, The Movements Trust!

When we set out to revolutionise funding for global development, we quickly realised that the rigidity of the charity system in the UK wouldn’t enable us to do everything differently. And that’s what we believe it takes to get more and better funding direct to communities.

After a lot of research we registered as a Community Interest Company, a legally non-profit social enterprise. This means that every penny of our income stays within our community.

Of course this comes at a cost – we can’t access gift aid and it may act as a deterrent to larger gifts that people and organisations would prefer to be tax deductible. Those who know us at One World Together know we’re passionate about our values of trust, solidarity and equity. With those in mind, we decided this was a cost we had to take to protect the feasibility our new approach.

The Movements Trust is a kindred spirit to us. They also exist to fill in gaps and fix problems in the funding landscape. For us, it’s getting more unrestricted funding to community organisations. For them, it’s getting more funds to social movements. They recognise the barriers that make charity registration difficult or undesirable for movements like ours, that must remain flexible and agile and have less resources to invest in all of the legal requirements of being a charity. 

They provide members with fiscal sponsorship – acting as a charitable arm for members to receive bigger gifts that individual or corporate donors want to be gift aid-able or tax deductible.

So if you’re a business, no matter how small or big, looking for an innovative way to bring your staff into the heart of positive social change in the world, please get in touch!

Take a look below to see what an institutional partnership could offer!

2. One World Together x The University of Manchester

Those of you who have been following us for a while may know that we are rooted in 3 decades of University of Manchester research investigating the challenges that development charities face in pursuing long-term social change.

Emerging from the University space we have always been excited about bringing the next generation into the centre of our wave of change. Our Youth Board and Students’ Union Society are showcasing the power of young people in changing the world. 

We are delighted to deepen this, with the University of Manchester becoming One World Together’s first institutional partner in May.  This means any UoM student can become a One World Together Global Citizen with no membership fee (by signing up with their university email address here). Students can access our online Community Space and all the learning and engagement it offers, without the financial barrier. They can connect with our partners, learn about the challenges of existing funding systems, and learn about the power of this new movement in supporting community-centred development.

We are also excited to have received additional funding from the University of Manchester’s Social Responsibility investments in the coming year. This will help us to start building a Global Citizenship curriculum to inspire and work with young secondary school students across Manchester (and beyond).

Both of these investments recognise our belief that we’re in this for the long-game. We recognise that philanthropy exists at every stage in our life-course. We believe that if we really want to get it right, not only must we build the alternative system of financing that One World Together offers, we must also invest in changing the narrative around what ‘charity’ and ‘development’ are so that the community-centred future we offer stands out as the ‘better’ way. The only way.

We have learnt many lessons over this first year of operations. One standout lesson is that doing things differently is hard. Shifting power dynamics in a sector with decades of experience and millions of pounds behind it is hard.  

But it is also so very necessary. We are deeply grateful to each and every one of our Global Citizens, and to our new partners The Movements Trust and the University of Manchester for believing in us and for supporting us in making this dream of a community-centred future a reality.

Get in touch if you’d like to see what an institutional partnership with One World Together could look like for your organisation.