Since the RBS Skills & Opportunities Fund launched in 2015 it has distributed £10 million, benefiting 148,064 people, creating over 2,000 jobs, getting nearly 4,000 people into employment and creating over 1,500 new businesses.
RBS’ £2.5m annual Fund provided opportunities in some of the UK’s and Republic of Ireland’s most disadvantaged communities. Open to not-for-profit organisations, including charities, social enterprises, community groups and state-funded schools and colleges, the Fund was aimed at supporting projects that would help people to learn new skills, develop their financial capability or start a business.
To administer the Fund, seven regions covering the UK and the Republic of Ireland were identified, with the banks Regional Boards setting priorities and overseeing a pre-defined allocation of funds for each region. Eligible organisations were invited to apply for individual grants of up to £35,000/€35,000, before regional shortlists were drawn up and put to the public vote. Members of the public were then asked to cast one vote in each region, helping the Regional Boards to decide who the final winners were.
Although the Skills & Opportunities Fund has now ended, RBS will continue to support financial capability and enterprise opportunities with our wider community initiatives, including MoneySense, the bank’s flagship financial education programme for young people.