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馃 Learning more to become a Co-operative Funder

Before we can begin to develop the potential new funds, there is some areas of practical research and learning we will need to do.
There are four main areas we need to learn more about, in order t help design a new fund that is 鈥榗o-operative鈥. This learning and research will feed directly into of the new funds and they are also able to be shared with other funders in the spirit of open research, for them to take on, develop, use and improve.
The four main areas are:
馃捀 Participatory grant making
馃憻 How to involve young people in the work, life and decision making of the Foundation (in context of the work already going on in the Co-op Group)
馃帗 Becoming world class in learning
馃寪 Exploring what it means to be a 鈥楥o-operative Funder鈥 with Co-operative foundations globally

This work will take place in January, February and March; so that it is ready to be fed into the design work in April
We will also record all the reports, sites, blogs and articles we use in the development of this work in a library for you all which you can explore here

馃捀 Participatory Grant Making

The first area is participatory grant making practice; an area that has been identified as one where more learning and investigation is needed to do it properly.
We would produce a practical guide with examples of how to鈥檚, best practice, ideas, and do it, do鈥檚 and don鈥檛s. It would aim to de-mystify the practise, breaking it down into simple ways of working. This would be based on research on global best practices around participatory grant-making; drawing out the best learning in the sector; and turning this into a list of practical things they can do.
It would also include the governance aspect of moving into participatory grant making and also explicitly how to do participatory grant making when not doing it 鈥榩lace based鈥 but with 鈥榗ommunities that are less tangible and based around other issues.
As crucial part of developing this guide will be when we hold a 鈥榮hare and build鈥 workshop with colleagues from the Foundation for them to share best practice they know of from their experience of the sector and build these out in new exciting ways of working for the Foundation.
So the tasks in this area of work will be as follows:
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Desk Based Research
Colleagues can also do some of their own research to bring ideas and views into the Share and Build workshop
Mon, Jan 31
Fri, Feb 25
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Share and Build Workshop - Participatory grantmaking practice
This will be a 鈥榮hare and build鈥 session where we will present the main areas of practise we have found in our research and then build and develop this, with colleagues bringing their own experience, practise and learning
Mon, Feb 28
Tue, Mar 1
No results from filter
And here are the tasks represented in a timeline chart
Desk Based Research
Share and Build Workshop - Participatory grantmaking practice
Write practical guide on Participatory grantmaking practice
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馃憻 How to involve young people the work, life and decision making of the Foundation

Drawing on the research around participatory grant making, and the governance aspects of that; we will also look to present an options paper to the Foundation on ways that they can involve young people in the work, life and decision making of the Foundation.
This work will draw on:
Learning from the current Youth Advisory Panel
Ways young people are currently involved in the wider Co-op Group
Best practise in the sector

So the tasks in this area of work will be as follows:
No results from filter
And here are the tasks represented in a timeline chart
5 interviews - Co-op Group people, YAP and sector thinkers
Desk Based research. External and internal (learning from YAP)
Youth Participation - Options Paper
Jan 2024
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馃帗 A Deliverable Plan to Become World Class in Learning

The new strategy states that 鈥淥ur learning, evaluation and compliance processes will be underpinned by our co-operative values and principles. We will aim to be world class in this field; testing, iterating and sharing radical new approaches鈥
So we will begin the process of researching, exploring and imagining what this could look like. This will include:
Desk-based research on best global practice in this area from around the world
Interviews with sector leaders
An 鈥榠magine session鈥 with colleagues to ideate ways this could happen. This will be a really important point at which to get creative and look into the future about what world class could look like.
This will explore not only how the foundation will learn, but also how it shares that out with others. This is wider than just dissemination, but about mobilisation. How to do we mobilise others to use our learning and how to do we support them to replicate and model what we learn works well? How do we ensure the our learning, research, ideas and experiences do not 鈥榮it in a draw鈥 but are accessible and usable by others.
All this will be explored and then written up into a 鈥榙eliverable plan鈥 for how you can become world class.
As the Foundation is in the process of recruiting a new Head of Learning and Impact we will do the research before the design sessions, but hold off writing the 鈥榙eliverable plan鈥 until later in the process to allow the new person to get into post and plan a key role in doing this (even taking on this work themselves if they wanted)
There is also clear overlap with how we measure and evaluate our own impact; and the deliverable plan will include recommendations for how this work can be developed once the funds are developed and the has been articulated.
So the tasks in this area of work will be as follows:
No results from filter
And here are the tasks represented in a timeline chart
Desk Based Research
6 Interviews with sector leaders
Imagine Workshop with colleagues and funded partners
Internal IWA Workshop to synthesize inputs
Write final 鈥榙eliverable plan for becoming world class in learning鈥
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馃寪 Exploring what it means to be a 鈥楥o-operative Funder鈥 with Co-operative foundations globally

As the Foundation explores what it means to be a 鈥楥o-operative Funder鈥, it will be important to learn from other Co-operative Foundations around the world. So we will aim to try to talk to them and learn from them. We will also explore and scope a if there is any appetite to work more closely in partnership; either through a community of practice or by working collaboratively.
We would do this by conducting interviews with leaders from these foundations.
We would also host a webinar with key people to share ideas and kick start conversations collectively.
We would then draw on these to produce a 鈥榳hat might be possible鈥 paper on this area of work.
There is already work starting in this area - in particular with the ICMIF, who are celebrating their centenary year. A joint call with other Co-operative and mutual foundations in planned for the spring so we will need to ensure that this work dovetails with that once the timings are fixed.
So the tasks in this area of work will be as follows:
No results from filter
And here are the tasks represented in a timeline chart
6 Interviews with other co-op Foundation leaders/thinkers in other countries
Discussion/webinar with leaders and thinkers
Write paper with recommendations on initial thinking and options
Jan 2024
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All of this work will then feed into the design processes of the funds - which you can read about here:


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