FSA announces winners of Innovation Fund

A money awareness pack for cancer carers and budgeting advice for people with learning disabilities are among the 12 projects that have been chosen as winners of the Financial Services Authority’s 200,000 Innovation Fund.

The 12 not for profit and community projects were chosen from more than 350 applications which proposed innovative ways to tackle financial capability issues that could help people take control of their money. Vernon Everitt, retail themes director of the FSA, says: “Funding these innovative ideas will enable organisations at the coalface to deal with issues like financial awareness and exclusion.

The projects will help identify good practice which can then be shared to the benefit of more people across the UK. The submissions we received were excellent and choosing the final 12 was tough. We would like to thank all applicants for the quality of their suggestions.”

One of the winning projects is a joint proposal by Mencap and the Citizens Advice Bureau. Teresa Perchard, director of policy at CAB, says: “Improving the financial capability of the nation is possibly one of the most important public policy issues facing us today. At CAB we want to do a lot more to help people deal with money matters, which is why this Innovation Fund from the FSA is so welcome.

“We are delighted to be awarded funds to work with Mencap to produce financial education materials for people with learning disabilities. We are also pleased to see the FSA investing funds in many other innovative projects which will reach those people who are hardest to reach, such as prisoners and ex-offenders and people with autism and asperger syndrome. We also applaud the FSA for doubling the size of the fund to 200,000 which will enable all of us to help more people.”

The award winning projects target a diverse range. They will help to build financial confidence by providing people with access to valuable information and advice on managing their money. The Innovation Fund is part of the FSA’s National Financial Capability Strategy.

The 12 winners are: British Refugee Council, East Surrey Domestic Violence Forum, News Lincolnshire Action, Loans & Savings Abertawe Credit Union in Swansea, Change Partnership, Mencap/Citizens Advice, North Warwickshire Citizens Advice Bureau, Omagh Independent Advice, Quaker Social Action in East London, St Christopher’s Hospice in South London, Sacar in Bradford and YWCA in Northampton and Wolverhampton.