Social Investment

Niamh is an associate with the Institute for Voluntary Action Research and co-wrote, with Leila Baker, Small Charities and Social Investment working on a research commission from IVAR, the Access Foundation and Barrow Cadbury Trust. She also co-wrote a research report for the Charity Commission for England and Wales (Charities and Social Investment, 2013).  She worked with IVAR, evaluating the largest single social investment (£18m The Foundry; Centre for Social Justice and Human Rights) in the UK on behalf of Barrow Cadbury Trust, Lankelly Chase Foundation, Joseph Rowntree Charitable Trust, Trust for London and the Ethical Property Company.

Niamh provides social investment services for the £220m Big Local programme, working in 150 deprived communities across England.  She supports local communities to make social investments in credit unions and social enterprises, carrying out due diligence and managing the investment fund. She is Expert Advisor to the Barclays Credit Union Capacity Building Programme (2014 – ). She was a member of the Steering Group for Poverty Premium: Fair by Design, a social investment fund managed by the Joseph Rowntree Foundation and Big Society Capital. She was a member of the Alternative Commission on Social Investment, funded by the Esmee Fairbairn Foundation (2015).

Niamh set up Charity Bank’s regional office in Northern Ireland, with responsibilities for establishing the organisation, raising capital and deposits, lending and social finance policy development in the region.  She raised £2m in core tier one capital for the bank as well as £5m in deposits and built a loan portfolio of over £2m. She fundraised for the first university-accredited qualification in investment readiness in the UK, designed the programme and managed its delivery by the University of Ulster. She produced Charity Bank’s first social impact report, developing an assessment approach using Theory of Change and logical framework analysis.