Membership

More than 350 organisations across the UK are proud to be ACF members. They include family trusts, corporate foundations, livery companies and broadcasting appeals that range in size from small and local grant-makers to some of the world’s largest foundations. Benefits of membership include ...

Information and guidance
We keep our members informed of the issues that affect them with targeted and timely information, and we provide guidance, practical advice and inspiration on key topics to enhance our members’ effectiveness, which feature;

  • a monthly newsletter summarising what UK foundations need to know about changes in charity regulation and the voluntary sector, and a magazine packed with features and shared experience;
  • briefings on key policy issues affecting trusts and foundations, such as safeguarding, governance and new data protection regulation;
  • free copies of our publications which provide vital reference material or summarise current thinking for foundations, and such as foundation engagement with the Social Investment market, or our ground-breaking series of publications on the management and governance charitable endowments.

Events and networking
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 foundation professionals to gather together as colleagues and peers. Our members benefit from;

  • discounted fees for our annual conference - the premier networking event for foundations - and for our professional development seminars which offer expert and practitioner insights to ensure foundation staff have the skills they need;
  • exclusive access to member-led peer networks on areas of funding interest or grant-making practice. These networks meet at least twice per year and each have a dedicated space on our website for members to sign up and contact each other between meetings;
  • an annual reception for foundation Chairs and special events for foundation leaders, such as roundtables on Advocacy and Place-based funding;
  • and support from a dedicated staff team to answer queries and put members directly in touch with their peers.

Advocacy
ACF works towards increased public understanding of the work and role of UK trusts and foundations, and for an enabling policy and operating environment for charitable foundations. Our sustained engagement with governments, policy-makers and charity regulators also provides a platform for our members to voice their perspectives resulting in greater collective influence on legislation and decision-makers. Through our policy work ACF represents foundations in a range of ways;

  • Strengthening the evidence-base and promoting the contribution of UK Foundations such as through our Stronger Foundations initiative and our annual report - Foundation Giving Trends;
  • Defending the independence of foundations so they are able to operate flexibly and in a way that is most aligned to their individual missions;
  • Engaging with officials within the charity regulators and government departments to influence legislation, policies and guidance, such as the government's Civil Society Strategy in England & HMRC's guidance on Common Reporting Standard;
  • Working collaboratively with sector partners to promote the value of the voluntary sector and civil society

We support UK foundations and grant-making charities