Climate education: schools pilot programme with a focus on measuring participants' carbon footprints
There's a huga gap in climate education, despite the key role students play (and will continue to play).
Showing a solid strategy and understanding of the system in which they're working, Climate Ed aims to not only educate students but empower them to take action.
We liked that particular thought was given to eco-anxiety and the need for students to be given agency to do something about a problem they are effectively inheriting.
The focus of the pilot is not on effecting wider policy change but rather creating a quickly scalable educational model that can produce an immediate impact. It is early days in this space and we're really excited to see it evolve.
Just transition: rapid response project aiming to amplify the voices of ex-Heathrow workers and create more green jobs
Restricted grant towards emergency response project headed up by Citizens UK. Heathrow is the biggest single site employer in the UK - 114,000 people. Since the pandemic, it has been closed down, putting thousands of people out of work. As furlough comes to an end, many of these people want jobs whilst at the same time, London needs a massive retrofit program to become carbon neutral by 2030, for which thousands of people need to be trained and employed. A key moment for ex-Heathrow workers to create political pressure for jobs is the London mayoral election on 6 May 2021. The goal is to register 10,000 Heathrow workers and their families to join the Citizens Mayoral Assembly on 28 April 2021 and publicly call for 60,000 new green jobs from the candidates
The KF Trustees identified youth movements as a key strategic route towards combatting the climate crisis. This is a well organised event, with excellent post-event exposure to key COP26 players, including the British PM. KF felt this was a relatively small project with massive potential. The Trustees were especially impressed by the emphasis on ensuring that students from countries with less exposure at COP26 had more exposure at Mock COP.
Between the 19th November and 1st December 2020 Mock COP sought to fill the void of the postponed COP26 with a big, inclusive online Mock COP. The event was run by young climate activists and aimed to get between 3 and 5 delegates from as many countries as possible, with a focus on the Global South. The two-week event was comprised of empowering and informative keynotes and panels by global names and youth activists, followed by high-level opening statements by the youth delegates and facilitated workshops and regional caucuses. The discussions were framed around five conference themes: climate justice; education; health and mental health; green jobs; carbon reduction targets. The event culminated in a powerful conference statement to world leaders from the youth of the world, raising ambition for COP26.
KF's funding, whilst core, went towards subsequently supporting and mentoring delegates to engage their domestic politicians in the year to COP26.
Part of our Covid response, this is the UK’s only peer led charity and service for young people aged 14-25 experiencing mental health difficulties, unique in being a national community run entirely by young people with lived experience, for young people with lived experience, not attached to or led by statutory services, clinicians or larger mental health or youth organisations.
KF entered a partnership with the Roddick Foundation and Choose Love, part of Help Refugees, which also hosted all the funds for the Kayapo Summit last January (an earlier KF grant).
The Roddick Foundation, Culture Hack Labs and Choose Love are working together with partners in Brazil; Fundo Casa, Mídia Ninja, and Articulação dos Povos Indígenas do Brasil (APIB) as well as 12 key indigenous leaders including Ailton Krenak, Sonia Guajajara and Dario Kopenawa - to create a step-change in international support for indigenous communities and the vital natural worlds they protect.
This fund will secure direct financial support for leaders and activists on the front-line at this time of acute stress in Brazil. This fund is the result of conversations and collaboration between funders and Brazilian partners, including leading grass-roots organisations and respected visionary leaders from indigenous communities.
The KF's first direct impact investment, the Ecological Land Cooperative provides ecologically managed, off grid, low impact small farms ready for new farmers to produce good, healthy food for local markets. Sustainably managed small farms provide low-impact livelihoods, regenerate marginal land and produce good food for local communities, increasing resilience and improving the soil, ecology and biodiversity for future generations. ELC is supporting 9 new entrants to farming to make a success of their farm businesses. Investment is in Community Shares which are targeting 3% interest, so for the KF this is a direct impact investment.
We were initially reviewing Open Kitchen as part of our Covid response however discussions unexpectedly led us towards a climate grant. Corin at OK has bold ambitions to help restructure Feedback's Gleaning Network to better support farmers rather than relying on volunteers. That food could then be sold (at reduced rate) to local authorities and other organisations with a social aim. The hope is that by supporting larger UK farmers, supermarkets etc won't move to buying abroad, which in turn would have a negative carbon and economic impact. Funding largely went towards a freelance coordinator, some Feedback staff costs and various smaller project costs.
Global Greengrants take a really interesting approach to protecting the planet and the rights of people by supporting grassroots-led efforts via a diverse community of people on the frontlines. As a relatively early grant for KF in the climate space, this seemed a good starting point and opportunity to learn from a more established organisation. We also liked how well they recognised the relationship between human rights and climate. Our target action areas were Climate Justice and Women's Environmental Action.
The short term impact of Covid had a couple of angles. Young LGBTQ+ people who were previously couch surfing or staying with older relatives were forced either to move back to a hostile environment or onto the streets. As well as providing emergency accommodation, AKT also sought to provide virtual support as well as a means of accessing that support (phones, credit etc) in addition to requests for funds for food, supplies and other vital needs via telephone or online. AKT has service staff operating in London, Newcastle upon Tyne, Bristol and Manchester with demand greatest in London.
We became signatories of a funder statement organised by London Funders (though by no means exclusive to London funders) to say that we recognise that the Covid-19 outbreak is an exceptional event that will have an impact on civil society groups, and that we want to offer reassurance that we stand with the sector during this time. The statement shows that we are committed to:
Maintaining grants and adapting activities in recognition of the fact some of the outputs or outcomes agreed for existing grants may be hard to achieve;
Discussing dates – especially re reporting deadlines;
Financial flexibility – acknowledging funding may need to be moved between budget headings to ensure work can continue; and
Listening – we are here if they want to talk to us about the situation they’re facing.
The fossil fuel divestment movement encourages moving investments away from fossil fuel companies on the basis charities (of all institutions) should not invest in companies that perpetuate issues they're trying to address with their grant making. Whilst divestment may have little financial impact on those companies, it nevertheless raises awareness and hopefully prompts fossil fuel companies to make greater efforts to focus on renewable energy. It may also help give politicians a basis for action, not to mention redistribute wealth on a global scale. The funds divested will be reinvested in climate-positive initiatives.
Subscribing to this movement was free.
The KF made a grant via Help Refugees to help the Kayapó tribe of the Brazilian Amazon to stage the largest meeting of its leaders in over a decade. Following the worst-on-record Amazonian fires and Brazil’s election of a hostile rightwing government, the Kayapó face unprecedented threats as a people and as custodians of 10m hectares of pristine rainforest. The need to agree a coordinated action plan to push back against encroaching loggers, miners and politicians was urgent. This summit brings together 450 senior figures from 80 villages, including 2019 Nobel Peace Prize nominee, Chief Raoni. Funds will facilitate a complex logistical operation, ensuring a population spread across remote rainforest can speak and act as one.
A small number of founder organisations came together to create this concept which asks funders to commit to a number of steps towards incorporating the climate crisis into their work. Not all of these funders necessarily have the environment as a grantmaking focus but all recognise the need to 'climtise' their thinking. The Kreitman Foundation wholeheartedly endorses this process.
The focus of this coalition is to encourage debate surrounding whether charities' investments ought to align with their objects. We believe this is a worthwhile discussion and have put our name to it. Subscribing to this movement was free.
Just Like Us empowers LGBTI+ young people through a fantastic role model programme and their national initiative, School Diversity Week. Sitting in on some of this week, we were blown away by the amount of pro-LGBTI+ student participation and strength this must have brought LGBTI+ students.
The Kreitman Foundation contributed towards JLU’s core costs.
In June 2020 the Foundation extended this to a 3 year grant to better aid planning.
Our research identified gender norms as lying at the core of many of the challenges LGBTI+ children and young people face. Lifting Limits is a young organisation addressing these issues by targeting the UK curriculum, with ambitions to achieve change at a national level. We believe the impact of this will be huge not only for LGBTI+ children and young people but also for the broader children’s rights movement. Further down the line this would benefit society as a whole.
The Kreitman Foundation provided core funding during this pilot phase.
In June 2020 the Foundation made another one-off grant to help LL pivot in response to Covid and progress its mission.