Friday, 14 December 2018

Henley Rotary Club

THIS week is “Good money week,” members were told by Sally Reith, engagement manager for Shared

THIS week is “Good money week,” members were told by Sally Reith, engagement manager for Shared Interest, which aims to finance fair trade businesses by offering an ethical investment vehicle for people wanting their money put to good use.

She was speaking at the club’s twilight meeting at the Red Lion Hotel on Tuesday evening having travelled from Leighton Buzzard.

She was accompanied by Richard Walker, from Sonning Common, one of the organisation’s 80 voluntary ambassadors and a former teacher.

Shared Interest’s HQ are in Newcastle and it has offices in Costa Rica, Peru, Ghana and Kenya, where staff and volunteers look for worthwhile projects to invest in, remembeing the dictum, “a hand up, not a handout”.

Founded in 1990 as an industrial provident society, the organisation was registered last year under the Co-operative and Community Benefit Societies Act and makes loans or extends credit facilities to businesses, including sole traders, who are members of approved fair trade organisations. The funds currently invested amount to £31million.

There are now 9,000 members in the UK and the minimum investment is £100 and the maximum £100,000. The current rate of return is 0.5 per cent but this can be amended at any time.

The organisation stresses that the return is not intended to be all financial, as investors are also motivated by the social return of knowing that the money has been put to good use.

Vivienne Quant gave the vote of thanks.

Earlier, president John Grout and honorary member Ken Fitt had appealed for more support for tonight’s (Friday) charity gala concert at Christ Church.

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