Q & A with Ethex

We caught up with Lisa Ashford, CEO of Ethex and Energise Africa, ahead of Ethical Consumer Week 2021 to hear about what they’ve got in store for the week and learn a little more about the world of ethical finance.

Ethex was established in 2013 and has been at the forefront of ethical finance and positive investing ever since.

They’ll be hosting two sessions during our Ethical Consumer Week 2021, which we’re very excited about. 

The first is on Greening your investments’ and will run on Wednesday 20th October, 10am-12pm.

The second, ‘Communities vs climate change - how grassroots actions are helping close the climate gap’, is on Friday 22nd October 10-11am, and will showcase the power of community action against the climate crisis in the face of government inaction. 

Q: During Ethical Consumer Week 2021, you’ll be hosting two events. Can you tell us a little bit more about them?

Both Ethex and Energise Africa are hosting events for Ethical Consumer Week. 

Energise Africa is holding an online event that's aimed at helping people understand the green finance options available to them. There's no doubt that 2021 will be a critical year for climate action, and now we are only a few weeks away from the COP26 climate change summit, where countries will come together to discuss actions to tackle climate change.

But it isn't just governments that hold the responsibility of climate action, every person has the opportunity to take action, with one of the most powerful weapons being their finances. 

This online event will bring together a panel of sustainable finance experts to discuss the growing popularity of 'green investing' and talk about the options available to everyday people to use their money to take action against climate change, whether you have £50 or £50,000 to invest. Investors should note that investing puts your capital at risk and returns are not guaranteed.

We will discuss some quick and easy ways to check where your money is invested and the options available to us all to use our money to take action against climate change.

The Ethex event is a panel discussion and Q&A. For this event, we will be joined by Isla McCulloch of Co-ops UK and representatives of some extraordinary community- and climate-driven organisations for an open discussion about the power of community projects to take decisive grassroots action against climate change in a post-Covid world.

During the webinar we’ll talk about the power of community action in the face of government inaction, and we’ll showcase some successful examples of community organisations that are making a difference, including People Powered Retrofit, Energise Barnsley and Bridport Co-housing. 

We will look at how we are able to blend institutional finance alongside individual investments to ensure these pioneering organisations achieve maximum impact and value for communities to build back better and tackle climate change. The panel will highlight how community share offers can play a key role in funding impactful projects. We will also discuss how the models they use can be replicated and scaled across the country so that collectively, small local actions generate a big impact.

ethical consumer week 2021

Why did you decide to support Ethical Consumer Week?

Following on from Good Money Week and just a few weeks before the COP26 climate summit in Glasgow, we see Ethical Consumer Week as an excellent way for people to join in the vital conversations about ways we can help close the climate gap.

With so many excellent organisations having important conversations throughout the week, we see it as a great opportunity to help spread the word about ways people can use one of the most powerful weapons available to us all to tackle the climate crisis - our money.

We're looking forward to showcasing some of the fantastic community organisations that are taking positive action against climate change and bringing together an excellent panel that can help people start greening their finances, whether they have £50 or £5,000 to invest. Investors should note that investing puts your capital at risk and returns are not guaranteed.

What are you most excited about for the week?

Ethical Consumer Week will bring together an amazing collection of organisations, speakers and ethically-minded people to have important discussions about the positive actions we can all be taking and that's a great idea.

We're excited to see so many names and organisations that we know and look forward to hearing what they have to say. We're personally excited about inspiring more people to make money do good.

How have you dealt with the challenges of the current pandemic? And has it shaped your ethical approach?

Like every organisation, Ethex and Energise Africa have faced many new challenges in the past years due to the pandemic. We're happy to say we have emerged stronger and we feel this is (in a big part) due to the desire from our community of investors to take the global challenges presented by the Covid crisis and use them to build back better and make the changes we as a society need to create a better future.

We remain committed to supporting organisations tackling climate change in a way that works for the whole of society and, judging by the successes of all our recent investment offers, more and more people are feeling the same.

We know that there are many people who are keen to use their money to create a positive environmental impact, but there just aren't the educational resources or the right kind of accessible and transparent financial products available to them – which was also highlighted in the UK Government’s Investing for a Better World report in 2019.

At Ethex and Energise Africa, through events like the ones we're hosting for Ethical Consumer Week, we are dedicated to helping more people learn about ways they can invest to do good, learn more about how it works and inspire them to get started!