Charity Bank and their B Corp Journey
Image above: A young BMXer practices at Unit2Sixty, a skate park and thriving social enterprise set up with the help of a Charity Bank loan.
Charity Bank in the UK became a B Corp in January 2015. Patrick Crawford, CEO of Charity Bank, reflects on their B Corp journey so far.
Why did Charity Bank decide to become a B Corp?
Charity Bank puts money to work for good. Many banks claim to be ‘different’ or ‘better’. The independent certification and the rigorous standards applied before we were accredited as a B Corp provide evidence that Charity Bank acts in a way that is true to its mission and is committed solely to supporting the creation of social benefit.
In becoming a B Corp, what impact has there been on Charity Bank?
We’re a bank that believes that banking should always work for good, which is why we only use the money deposited in our savings accounts to support charities and social enterprises. It’s why charitable foundations and trusts and social purpose organisations invest in us. It’s why more savers and why more borrowers are choosing us.
We know that, in order to grow our community and to help more people recognise their power to deploy their savings in ways that support the foundations of our society, we need to protect our social purpose and values and to provide evidence of them. Being a B Corp is helping us to do just that.
How did Charity Bank find the certification process?
The process was rigorous and thorough and it helped us to think through the way that we operate but did not require us to make any changes in what we already did.
What excites you the most about being part of the UK B Corp founding community? Where would you like to see it end up?
Being part of a growing community of like-minded businesses all driven to be a force for good in different ways is both very worthwhile and empowering.
We are proud we were the first bank in Europe to become a B Corp and that others have since followed our lead. The movement to define more widely the meaning of true and lasting success in business is building momentum and we see enormous benefit in helping to drive that in the UK, so all companies compete, not only to be the best in the world but to be the best for the world. Together we can create lasting positive social change in our communities.