Charity Bank is a Best Buy brand in our guides to Ethical Savings Accounts and Ethical Cash ISAs.
It is at the smaller end of banking institutions with an annual turnover of around £8m. It scored highly across the board for our ethical ratings, coming top of the pile. It provides loans across the social and charity sector, for projects including education, the environment, health and social care, sports, voluntary and community regeneration.
On its website it says, “Your money will be used to support charities and social enterprises, whilst earning you a return”. Since 2002, when it was launched in Downing Street by Gordon Brown, Charity Bank has given over 1,100 loans equalling £400m to social purpose organisations.
Due to this social mission, and the fact that it’s a certified B Corporation, it received a positive Company Ethos mark on our ratings system.
In its Corporate Social Responsibility report, it outlined its lending policies which included not engaging with businesses involved with arms manufacturing, illegal drugs, gambling, tobacco, or terrorism among others.
Surprisingly for a bank, it didn’t get marked down for excessive director’s remuneration as it didn’t appear to pay any executives £250,000 or above per year. It also stated “Unusually for a bank, but in keeping with its former charitable status, Charity Bank's non-executive members of the board are unpaid."
Charity Bank received Ethical Consumer’s best rating for Carbon Management and Reporting. It states, “We lend across the charity and social sector; this includes renewable energy projects and hydro energy projects. We do not finance fossil fuel projects and companies.”
As a small company, it also received a best rating for Environmental Reporting, because it has a good understanding of its main areas of environmental impacts.
Subscribe to see the full detailed stories about Charity Bank.