ACF: Association of Charitable Foundations, supporting the UK's foundations and grant-making charities
Association of Charitable Foundations
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What We Do - Association of Charitable Foundations

ACF is the UK community for trusts and foundations

Trusts and foundations play a unique role in supporting civil society; one that is not widely understood by the charitable sector, policy makers or the public. Many foundations have endowments and it is these assets, combined with independence and longevity that shape foundations’ distinctive character.

Giving over £2 billion each year, UK foundations fund and work in partnership with a diverse range of organisations and people; from community groups, charities and social enterprises to museums, hospitals and schools. Foundations primarily support charitable activity for public benefit through grant-making, although increasingly some also employ other resources, such as their knowledge and experience, networks and ability to act as a convenor.

ACF is the only membership association representing the interests of all independent charitable funders in the UK.

For over 20 years we have supported trusts and foundations; respecting and safeguarding their independence, and helping them to be effective in the multiplicity of ways they use their funds.

ACF acts as a public face for foundations and a champion of their vital contribution to civil society. Our sustained engagement with governments, policy-makers and charity regulators provides a platform for all members to voice their perspectives and have greater collective influence on legislation and decision-makers.

Sharing experience is at the heart of ACF.

Trusts and foundations, many of which have few or no paid staff, balance the demanding responsibilities of managing assets with the processes of charitable funding. ACF is the only organisation that brings foundations from across the UK together; playing an essential role by providing a safe space, in person, online and in print, for trustees and grant-making professionals to gather together as colleagues and peers.

ACF membership provides a way for charitable grant-makers of all sizes and stages of development, with diverse funding styles and areas of interest to share their learning, insights and good practice to enlighten and inspire each other.

Please use the links on the left-hand side of this page to find out more about our work. 

If you are a grant-making trust or foundation and would like to find out further details about what the services we offer to our members, please visit the benefits of joining ACF section. 

 If you would like to join ACF and you are a grant-making charity, please go to our become a member section.