A&B unveils new £3m arts philanthropy drive

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Arts & Business has unveiled a new challenge fund which is designed to act as a catalyst helping cultural organisations increase the amount they raise from philanthropy.

The Big Arts Give 2010 is being run as a one-year pilot with an initial fund of £500,000, supplied by A&B and UK philanthropist Alec Reed. Reed is the founder of the Big Give website, which serves to match-make charities with donors.

Colin Tweedy said the fund marked the "first step on the road to transforming arts philanthropy".

He added: "The Big Arts Give is a significant part of our Private Policy for the Arts target - to reach £1 billion of private sector investment and philanthropy. We believe that this initial pilot will help arts charities raise at least £3m for the arts this year.

"In this pilot year, we anticipate raising at least £8 of new cultural wealth for every £1 Arts & Business invests through the catalyst fund. We will promote this innovative approach for the benefit of organisations wishing to develop new relationships with givers. It is not about "quick fix" fundraising, but should be used by arts organisations to help foster a culture of life-long giving. The arts are often perceived as being slightly out of the mainstream of charitable giving. The Big Arts Give will push culture further up the ladder of charitable causes."

To be able to access money from the fund, arts charities will have to raise a set some of money themselves, before then being able to claim a some equal to their total pledge from the challenge fund. It will be launched this December as part of the Big Give Christmas Challenge 2010.

A&B will be holding briefings for arts organisations across the country interested in taking part in the scheme. More details are available at www.artsandbusiness.org.uk.

Arts & Business is an Arts Council England - funded organisation which aims to develop partnership between cultural organisations and the commercial sector and private donors.