Measurement of the social impact of the projects which the Foundation supports is very difficult. However, metrics have been generated and are shown in the tables below. Every effort is made to enhance this information and make it as relevant as possible.
- The Foundation strives to achieve a balanced distribution of funds throughout the State and the Chart illustrates this is being broadly achieved.
- The nature of the Foundation’s lending is shown below. The Foundation is very conscious of its obligation to ensure that monies are utilised in areas where they will have a high social impact. The breakdown illustrates that this is being achieved.
At inception, it was decided not to pursue formal measurement and reporting of social impact until the Foundation was well established and the nature of social lending was better understood. Since late 2010, data has been collected on the projects which have been supported by SFF funding through the SLOs.
These measures are the best available at this time and will be refined over time. It needs to be recognised that, while expressed in quantifiable terms, it lacks precision for a number of reasons:
- The figures being estimates prior to the project commencing rather than actual when the project has been implemented
- The role that bridging finance plays in getting a project off the ground, where grants are only paid when expenditure has been incurred.
- Foundation funds may only be a small proportion of the overall project and attributing all the social benefits could be seen as an exaggeration.
The lack of precision should not however take from the broad thrust of the data, reflecting as it does the social impact of monies lent in a year (€12.3m in 2013) as shown in the graphs.