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Philanthropy has a pivotal role to play in addressing the unique challenges faced by our island community, from the cost-of-living crisis to environmental obstacles, and from physical and mental ill health to inequality. But what exactly is philanthropy and why does it matter for us all?


In its purest form, “philanthropy” means love of humanity. “Philos” means love, and “Anthropos” means mankind or humanity. So, a philanthropist is someone who acts out of love for mankind.


At its core, philanthropy is about giving money to good causes. But it’s not just the act of making financial donations; it’s also about giving time, skills and resources for the greater good.


Why is philanthropy important?


Individuals, communities and entire countries face complex problems every day, from poverty to problems caused by climate change and inadequate access to healthcare. These are just a handful of areas that need investment and advancement, but governments can’t always solve these issues alone.


That’s why philanthropy is so important. It helps to speed up progress where it’s needed most and supports causes that make a real difference in the world, benefitting people, the environment and society overall.


Key benefits of philanthropy for Jersey


Essential services, including education, healthcare, housing, support services and our Island’s heritage, arts and culture rely deeply on philanthropic income for their sustenance.


This support manifests in various forms, from funding supplementary education initiatives with charities like Every Child Our Future, Brighter Futures and Jersey Child Care Trust, to investing in healthcare infrastructure through organisations like Hospice and Family Nursing and Home Care. Additionally, newer healthcare services such as Lifestyle Medicine Jersey focus on preventative lifestyle adjustments. Charitable contributions also extend to lifeline services such as Citizens Advice and Food Banks.


What this shows it that these charitable funds drive much of the cultural richness, innovation and lifeline support in our community.


Additionally, philanthropy serves as a catalyst for community cohesion and collaboration. By bringing individuals and groups together to pursue common goals, philanthropy can strengthen the fabric of our island society and create internal resilience. It can inspire grassroots movements, encourage volunteerism and promote civic engagement, ultimately enhancing the quality of life for all islanders.


In essence, philanthropy serves as a cornerstone of a compassionate and equitable society, offering hope, support and opportunity to those in need while supporting a wider culture of generosity, empathy and collective responsibility.



Pockets of need in Jersey


Jersey, renowned for its affluence and natural beauty, also grapples with significant socio-economic challenges, as outlined in JCF's Local Needs Assessment (2022).


According to the data, over half of the island's residents, accounting for 53%, struggle to meet their basic living expenses. Moreover, a staggering 61% of respondents in a JCF survey expressed difficulty in managing unexpected bills of £400, highlighting the precarious financial situations faced by many.


Income disparity remains a pressing issue, with the top 10% of earners averaging seven times more income than the bottom 10% of earners. In 2021, households in the lowest income bracket earned an average of £28,600, while those in the middle-income bracket earned substantially more at £73,400.


Furthermore, homelessness persists, with an estimated 100 individuals experiencing ‘rooflessness’ or ‘houselessness’ at any one time in 2022. This issue stems from various factors, including shortcomings in the foster care system, instances of domestic abuse, challenges related to mental health and addiction and barriers to employment and housing due to residential rights regulations.


Additionally, approximately 13,500 islanders reside in social housing, underscoring the demand for affordable accommodation and the importance of addressing housing insecurity.


These statistics shed light on the pockets of need within Jersey's community, underscoring the urgency for comprehensive efforts to address socio-economic disparities and enhance support systems for vulnerable populations.


Addressing Jersey’s areas of need was a key driver for JCF’s 2022 Local Needs Assessment which identified priority areas for funding. The areas identified to tackle were poverty, providing the elderly with care and support, alleviating the cost-of-living crisis, promoting mental health and encouraging healthy living.


By strategically investing in these areas, JCF and donors play a pivotal role in building a more equitable, inclusive and resilient island community, ensuring that all members of the community, regardless of their background or circumstances, have access to the resources and support they need to thrive.


Ultimately, the JCF's commitment to addressing these pressing needs reflects its vision of a Jersey where everyone can lead fulfilling and dignified lives.


The importance of attracting High Net Worth Individuals (HNWI) to Jersey


There is huge financial and social value in the philanthropic potential of Jersey’s wealthiest people. Research and analysis by The Beacon Collective as part of their 2023 ‘Scoping the High Net Worth Philanthropy Market’ report estimates that giving by the UK’s HNWI and UHNWI (Ultra High Net Worth Individuals) population for 2022 was worth around £7.76 billion, and possibly much more. Recent local data also shows that the amount of money banked in Jersey has hit a 12-year high of £156.4 billion.


Attracting HNWIs to Jersey involves highlighting the island's unique appeal, including its tax advantages, lifestyle and business opportunities. Jersey's favourable tax regime, coupled with its picturesque landscapes and high-quality living standards, make it an attractive destination for wealthy individuals seeking both financial benefits and a desirable lifestyle.


HNWI play a significant role in contributing to Jersey's local economy and community through philanthropy. Beyond financial investments, they often lend their expertise, networks and resources to support charitable causes and community initiatives. By actively engaging in philanthropic endeavours, HNWI contribute to the island's social and economic development, cultivating a sense of belonging and collective responsibility.


Several notable examples showcase the impactful contributions of HNWI to Jersey's philanthropic landscape. For instance, Kezia’s Fund which supports children and young people’s mental health, as well as local environmental and conservation initiatives, have attracted support from wealthy donors who want to help address our island’s pressing needs and inspire others to get involved and make a difference in our island community.


An example of a local environmental project which received funding from a HNWI in 2023 is the ‘Life below water’ drive by Ocean Culture Life. The organisation received funding to run education workshops to increase ocean awareness and engagement among the public, including children, to create a collective sense of responsibility and participation in conservation efforts. Participants are empowered as ‘Ocean Guardians’, learning about marine ecosystems’ critical state and how to help take tangible actions to protect them. This leads to reduced plastic waste, increased sustainable behaviours, advocation for marine protection and initiating local initiatives like beach clean-ups.


Overall, attracting and engaging HNWIs in Jersey's philanthropic efforts not only enhances the island's reputation as a hub for wealth management, but also strengthens its social fabric and nurtures a culture of giving back.


Challenges for philanthropy


Economic uncertainty has shifted donor priorities, which in turn has made securing adequate funding more difficult for some charities. A lack of awareness, perceived barriers to participation, trust and transparency concerns, cultural and social norms, time constraints and generational attitudes also impact engagement and pose obstacles.


To address these challenges, JCF’s strategies aim to focus on raising awareness about philanthropy's accessibility and impact; encouraging trust through transparency, effective communication and stakeholder collaboration; and adapting approaches to align with diverse cultural norms and generational preferences.


In addition, creating opportunities for flexible and meaningful engagement, and advocating for supportive policies, can encourage broader participation in philanthropy within the community.


Key figures driving philanthropic research and thought leadership


The UK’s first ever professor of Philanthropic Studies, Beth Breeze OBE, is an author and the Director of the Centre for Philanthropy at the University of Kent. She will visit Jersey in May for the first in a series of JCF events about building a culture of philanthropy in Jersey.


She says, “Building a culture of giving is about more than donating money, it's about recognising our shared humanity and common fate as neighbours. The research shows that when done well, philanthropy can strengthen communities and change the lives of both beneficiaries and donors. When we come together to give back, we can create a better world for everyone, now and in the future.”


Anna Terry is the CEO of the Jersey Community Foundation and a key figure in driving philanthropic giving in our island. She adds to Beth’s comments, saying, “At JCF, we're committed to empowering individuals and organisations to make meaningful contributions to our island community. By strategically aligning resources with pressing needs and leveraging our collective strengths, we can drive positive change and create a more inclusive and resilient Jersey, building a brighter future for generations to come."


Learning more and taking part


Cultivating a culture of philanthropy isn't just a necessity; it's vital to building a stronger, more resilient community. Through collective generosity and collaboration and addressing our island's pressing needs, we can pave the way for a brighter future not just for those in need, but for us all.


JCF firmly believes in the transformative impact of giving back. By instilling philanthropic values within the community, the Foundation strives to tackle urgent local challenges and build a fairer, more inclusive island community.

Building a culture of philanthropy in Jersey

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