Can I ever get my donation refunded?
No, your donation is, well, a donation. Even though it is invested or saved, you decide to part with the money. The donation will remain in the Future Fund’s investment account forever, or at least as long as the Future Fund exists. It will keep producing interest every year that will be given to the charity or charities that you have chosen, even after you die. See here for what will happen should the Future Fund ever cease to exist.
How is my donation invested?
With the Future Fund donors achieve a double impact with their donation:
- Charities are supported through the interest on investments
- The investments themselves are done only into businesses that do well on ethical, sustainable and social criteria (‘Responsible investing’). So donors also support businesses that are doing well in these areas!
What is ‘responsible investing’?
All investments at the Future Fund are done in accordance with ‘responsible’ investment values. Responsible investing means that ethical, sustainable and social standards are taken into account in the investments.
In practise, we do this by opting for an ESG or SRI fund. ESG stands for Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) and SRI stands for Socially Responsible Investment (SRI). In these funds, companies in certain sectors are excluded (such as weapons, tobacco and gambling), plus more weight is allocated to companies that perform better on ESG or SRI scores.
The average interest per year on stocks in general was 7.0% in the past 150 years (already corrected for inflation). ESG and SRI investments generate the same (or even better) return as stocks in general.
Triodos responsible investments fund
Donations will be invested in the Triodos Pioneer Impact Fund. Triodos itself describes this fund as follows:
Triodos Pioneer Impact Fund aims to generate positive impact and competitive financial returns from a concentrated portfolio of small- and mid-cap companies pioneering the transition to a sustainable society. We select companies for their contribution to our seven sustainable transition themes. Through integrated financial and sustainability analysis we identify the drivers of a company’s long-term value creation and assess the impact of ESG materiality on these drivers. Additionally, the companies we invest in must comply with the Triodos minimum standards.