Our work is centred around three areas:
- Supporting law, campaigning, and journalism for social impact
- Backing ideas to achieve change
- Tackling the climate emergency
Supporting public interest law, campaigning and journalism for change
We’re funding initiatives and also building the infrastructure to enable lawyers, campaigners, and journalists to work more effectively together.
Law for Change
Launched in 2022, Law for Change is an initiative offering financial support to legal actions that can contribute to lasting social change and tangible benefit to the public good. The fund was set up in conjunction with philanthropist Stephen Kinsella and law reformer Charles Keidan to address real societal harms through legal actions in the public interest.
Link for Change
As legal action alone is not always enough, Changing Ideas is working with Breakthrough Impact to support grassroots campaigners and the Bureau of Investigative Journalism to enhance the social impact of its journalism and deepen connections to promising campaigns and legal actions.
We sponsor the awards for ‘best use of law’ and ‘campaigner of the year’ at the Sheila Mckechnie Foundation's annual campaigner awards.
We are launching the Tenacious Awards in 2023 to provide funding and support to the most effective campaigners.
Backing ideas to achieve change
Research for Change
In 2023-24, Changing Ideas will be making a series of "Changing Ideas" grants to help frontline charities be more effective. We plan on making several grants to organisations to validate their work and also support them to advance their work in collaboration with others. Further information is available here.
Here are recent examples of grants that we have made which have demonstrated the value of such funding and helped us better understand where we can provide support.
Early year education in refugee camps: validation of a new idea through research exploration
In 2022, a Changing Ideas research grant enabled Children on the Edge to devote staff resources to researching and assessing the effectiveness of their model of early learning education to children in refugee camps in Uganda. This model was pioneered during the COVID pandemic. +more...
Disability and mental health - cost effective mental health solutions for people with spinal cord injuries
In 2020, a Changing Ideas grant to the Spinal Injury Association (SIA) examined the prevalence of mental health issues amongst the spinal cord injury community to find cost effective solutions. The research highlighted that 47% of spinal cord injured respondents had mental health issues and 28% had suicidal thoughts. +more...
Increasing patient recruitment success for clinical trials: Building a framework for researchers
In 2022, Changing Ideas provided a research grant to Live UTI Free, a patient research and advocacy organisation with a focus on recurrent and chronic urinary tract infection (UTI). Although recurrent UTI has high prevalence and is at the centre of the antimicrobial resistance crisis, clinical trials for new treatments are subject to failure due to insufficient patient recruitment.+more...
Human trafficking: an exploration of the effectiveness of partnership models in improving the identification of victims of human trafficking in Scotland,
Human trafficking in Scotland is vastly under identified and reported, resulting in devastating effects for individuals, communities and significant cost to the public purse. A Changing Ideas grant in 2022-23 is enabling Survivors of Human Trafficking in Scotland (SOHTIS) to pilot a model of improved identification of victims of human trafficking first developed in Greater Manchester, England.+more...
An innovative prosthetics programme responding to the severe lack of comfortable, affordable prosthetics for people with disability in northern Syria
At least 86,000 people have lost a limb in the Syrian war, many of whom are children and do not have access to any cost-effective, comfortable and functional prostheses. We made a grant in 2021/22 to Hands Up Foundation to launch a pilot programme to respond to this lack.+more...
Tackling the climate emergency
As the climate emergency is the biggest issue facing us all, we make occasional grants that we hope will have some impact. Two examples are:-
SOS-UK – Teach the Parent
We provided seed funding to develop the new initiative Teach the Parent. It's aim is to encourage schoolchildren to work with their parents to make pledges around climate. It is being evaluated in several countries and it is hoped this will become a major global initiative.
Other funding of note
We give occaional grants in support of other initiatives that do not readily fall into the areas outlined above.
Issue: Mutual Aid & Community Action / Partner: Social Change Agency
Established at the Social Change Agency, the Changing Ideas mutual aid fund supports the development n of the mutual aid movement in a post covid context as cost of living pressures rise. +more...
The establishment of the new fund follows on from support we gave alongside The Lankelly Chase Foundation at the start of the Covid pandemic in March 2020. This earlier support enabled a platform and infrastructure to be made available to dozens of small community groups that sprung up to help vulnerable people and communities cope through challenging times.Today, the agency has around 300 groups working with them. Almost £2 million of donations have passed through their platform from individuals and foundations directly to local communities.
Issue: Theatre for social impact / Partner: Sit-up Awards
We give an annual prize at the Edinburgh Fringe to support theatre companies, before, during and after their productions to achieve greater impact. +more...
Issue: Human Rights / Partner: Children on the Edge
We provided essential funding to enable Children on the Edge to get their campaign off the ground to introduce a law in the Ugandan parliament to bring an end to human sacrifice.The law was passed in 2021.
Issue: Online harms / Partners: Foxglove, Good Law and Cease UK
We have made several donations to initiate research into legal action against tech companies for the harms caused to young people and further supported legal action in this area.