There are many different pathways to giving, and there is no single image of what a philanthropist looks like.

Strategy and decision making are a crucial part of giving. In Philanthropy Stories, we speak to philanthropists of all types about the highs and lows they faced on their journeys.

If you’d like to contribute a story, please get in touch.

pauline de souza diversity arts forum

Diversity Art Forum: Flexibility, trust, possibilities.

For Pauline De Souza direct engagement with independent artists and arts institutions is the key to successful philanthropy. For her, a successful result is an arts project that stimulates debate.

grant gordon

Meeting the challenge of recovery – Responding to COVID-19

Grant Gordon says he had a light bulb moment: on a webinar to discuss philanthropy’s response to COVID-19 the discussion centred around three phases of response – relief, recovery, resilience. He realised that many agencies were piling in to the relief effort, but what about the longer term?

Supporting organisations to survive and thrive – responding to Covid-19

With a huge funding gap looming for the non-profit sector, Shalni Arora took the view that there are organisations we simply cannot afford to lose as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

laura montgomery

Difficult decisions

Laura believes passionately that philanthropists and foundations have a duty to ensure they are doing philanthropy well, having learnt over the years that giving money away is easy but measuring impact is extremely difficult.

black heart foundation

The ripple effect of philanthropy, with Ric Lewis

For Ric Lewis, education is the holy grail for unlocking potential and setting young people on a path to bigger and better. He believes if one person receives the quality education that they deserve there is a multiplying effect on their family and friends and therefore any support given to one person has a wider and greater effect. By using his philanthropic capital in this way Lewis is ensuring that he reaches as many people as possible.

accelerating technology

Forging new partnerships without fanfare

Giving is a very personal experience which different donors approach in unique ways. For some, anonymity is important, but when reaching out to new organisations this can create interesting and unexpected challenges.

environmental philanthropy

Environmental philanthropy: Maintaining focus through a crisis

The world has 6 months to avert a climate crisis according to Fatih Birol, executive director of the International Energy Agency (IEA). The IEA are urging governments to put green policies at the heart of the post-pandemic recovery plans: philanthropists have a critical role to play in supporting this.

marcelle speller

Accelerating technology to support grant applications

Marcelle Speller knows the power of technology platforms to aggregate information for buyers and sellers. She formerly founded and since leaving the company in 2005 has been working on her original philanthropic project:, which enables small local charities to raise money.

richard lissack

Launching a national helpline, in just three weeks – Responding to COVID-19

On 8th April 2020, Richard Lissack received a call from a former client, Michaela Willis MBE. Known for her previous leadership of the National Bereavement Partnership (NBP), Michaela had been receiving calls from NHS key workers, asking her to re-ignite the charity and open the national helpline, in the way she had done previously.