“Emmaus is a global charity that was started in Paris in 1946 and now has communities in over 70 countries. Its philosophy is based on the idea that to truly help people out of homelessness and back into society, affected individuals need not only safe and stable accommodation, but also meaningful work and a sense of belonging and purpose. Recovery of self-esteem is at the core of its ambition.
“Emmaus Village Carlton began in 2001 and since then has grown into one of the largest communities in the UK. In line with the wider Emmaus ethos, we don’t offer temporary solutions but provide up to 42 people at any one time with a home for as long as they need it, a support network and full-time work to help improve their self-worth and skillset.
“Our 15-acre site includes three accommodation blocks, offices and training rooms, a centre for sorting goods donated by members of the public, a 15,000-square-foot retail store, a popular café, and playing fields. Not only do the businesses give us sustainable revenue but they also provide the opportunities for our Companions, the people staying with us, to develop their skills, self-confidence and future aspirations.
“A lot of this has been made possible by the loans we’ve received from Charity Bank. Our most recent loan in 2013 helped to provide essential funding for us to upgrade our retail floor space and workshops for our Companions to benefit from. This has resulted in significant growth and a notable increase in our annual turnover.
“Charity Bank has been very easy to work with and they are always helpful when any problems arise. Social lenders like Charity Bank provide an extremely important and useful service for charities. In the social sector, it can often be the case that while something valuable needs to be done, there isn’t necessarily a hard-nosed business case to back it up. Getting a loan from a mainstream source isn’t feasible in these instances and if something is time-sensitive then fundraising through conventional means might take too long.
“Charity Bank provides a vital opportunity for charities to grow and develop. If you are in a position where you can service a loan and would like a supportive lender then Charity Bank could be just what you need."
Emmaus Village Carlton is just one of 38 Follow the Money visits. Explore further Follow the Money visits and see how Charity Bank savers' money is used for good.
See the previous Follow the Money visit – Adrenaline Alley Skate Park, and our next visit - Big Creative Education.