Charities offered £1.8m to improve digital and financial inclusion

Santander Foundation has launched a £1.8m fund to help charities and community interest companies to bolster people’s digital and financial skills.

The Financial and Digital Empowerment Fund plans to support 12 charitable organisations with a grant of up to £150,000 each over three years.

The bank’s charitable arm has launched the fund as research shows that 39% of adults do not feel confident managing their money and 6% are digitally excluded by not having internet access at home.

“Without access to mainstream financial services and tools, the impacts of financial and digital exclusion are profound,” said Santander Foundation chair Judith Moran.

“Not only do people pay more for goods and services and have reduced choice, but it can also affect education, employment, health, housing and overall wellbeing.

“The launch of our new grants programme is aimed at supporting charities who work with those that feel the impacts of financial or digital exclusion the most.

“With the pandemic further highlighting the crucial importance of digital and financial skills, with more and more basic services moving online, we want to ensure we build the capacity of organisations that help more people in our communities become digitally and financially empowered, creating better opportunities for their future.”

The deadline for applications is 13 August.

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