We have worked with the family-run investment company J Leon Group since 2011 when they first approached us for strategy support.
The company had been donating to charity for some years but had recently formed the J Leon Philanthropy Council (JLPC) to increase their scale of donations, to manage their giving in a more thoughtful and systematic way, and to involve family shareholders in decisions.
NPC supported JLPC to think about the aims for the company’s giving, clarify funding areas and discuss the charity selection process. With our help through workshops and research, JLPC members chose NEETs (not in employment, education or training) and human rights as their main areas of interest, which has since expanded to address social inclusion, issues around mental health and environmental advocacy.
We then spent time with JLPC to consider the type of funder they wanted to be, offering advice on good practice in grant-making, recommending appropriate funding structures and training JLPC members in our charity analysis methodology to enable them to assess potential grantees.
We worked through the practicalities of the grant-making process step by step to set out a plan for how the company’s giving would be administered. The strategy and processes implemented enabled them to significantly scale up the company’s grant-making and impact.
NPC continues to support J Leon on a retainer basis, providing support as and when needed by JLPC. We support the JLPC to be an effective funder, with such support as guiding on potential new areas of funding, reviewing grant reporting documents, attending trustee meetings and sharing sector insights.
We annually facilitate a session for the company’s interns about philanthropy and what the role of corporate philanthropy should be.
Most recently we published a paper on Women’s pathways through the criminal justice system to help JLPC make decisions about their funding into this space.
More than 13,500 women are imprisoned in the UK every year. The reasons why are complex but they must be understood if these numbers are to be reduced. This research has been commissioned by the J Leon Philanthropy Council to gain a better understanding of women’s pathways into and through the criminal justice system.
Consultant Grace Wyld sets out the three areas which will define NPC's criminal justice work over the next year.
In this piece we outline our findings from research into the role of charities in the criminal justice sector. We found that charities make a unique contribution in this space, but face various challenges to achieving their potential. After exploring these challenges, we make suggestions for how funders, commissioners and government, and charities themselves can work to overcome these issues and maximise the voluntary sector's value-add in the criminal justice sector.