Addressing funding disparity for Black and minority ethnic led organisations

Linklaters is delighted to share that it is a founding funder of Baobab Foundation, a new foundation providing long-term funding and support to Black and minority ethnic voluntary organisations and charities across the UK addressing racial injustice. The launch of the Foundation follows a two-year research and development phase supported by the firm.

Linklaters committed to taking action and partnering with purpose in its Race Action Plan – expanding its network of relationships with racial justice organisations. The Baobab Foundation aims to provide long-term funding to help Black and minority ethnic led organisations dealing with historic under-investment, limited systems, personnel and financial continuity. The Foundation aims to grow, support and strengthen groups and organisations led by and serving underrepresented individuals and communities across the UK.

Julie Hutchinson, Steering Group member of Baobab, commented:

“Baobab Foundation was born out of the anger and frustration surrounding the murder of George Floyd and the terrible impact of Covid-19 on Black and Global Majority communities. From the outset it was our intention to be bold, long-term and a point of difference in a funding system that hasn’t been set up to support our communities. We are proud to call Linklaters a founding solidarity partner for funding, supporting and joining us in our mission to tackle systemic racism in the UK. We hope their actions will encourage others to become part of our change story.”

Joanna Keefe, Global Corporate Responsibility Manager at Linklaters, stated:

“As soon as we learnt about Baobab’s concept and ambition, we wanted to support its development and we provided initial funding during its research phase. The ambition to address widespread racial inequalities aligns with our own aspirations.
We saw the potential impact Baobab could have across the UK – from enabling unheard voices to be heard to a shift in power dynamics in charitable funding – and wanted to join with the Foundation and support this movement for change.”

The firm is committed to supporting Baobab to achieve its ambitions through funding, commercial skill sharing and volunteering. In April 2022, Linklaters provided the first corporate volunteer opportunity to Baobab’s network of charities, alongside other racial justice partners, through a collaboration between the LEARN Network and Citi. The session saw Head of Client Knowledge and Learning, Ian Rodwell, lead business volunteers to deliver skills workshops to 30 charities and small businesses.

Find out more about Linklaters’ Race Action Plan here.