CAF Venturesome


We have been providing affordable, repayable finance to charities and social enterprises for over 15 years.

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Local Food Links

View case study


Social investment is the use of money to achieve both a social and financial return. A growing number of charities are using this source of repayable finance to help accelerate their future plans. It’s not a grant or donation; it’s repayable, often with interest.

Our social investment loans are unsecured and can be an affordable, flexible source of finance, where other lenders may be unable to help. It may not be suitable for every organisation but we can help you decide whether to consider it alongside your other funding options.


At CAF Venturesome we understand the financial challenges that social organisations face - from waiting for a grant to come through, to having the money to grow.

  • We'll work closely with you to understand your charity's situation.
  • We'll look at both your financial performance and your social impact.
  • We'll work personally with you every step of the application process.
  • We'll help you to build the long-term sustainability of your organisation.

We too are a registered charity dedicated to creating social impact. The money you repay is loaned to other charities in the same situation as you.

Our affordable finance has helped hundreds of charities and social enterprises take their mission forward.

Download our new impact report


We support charities, social enterprises and community
groups which are incorporated in the UK.

Build capacity with the Development Fund

Supporting growth or cashflow needs

Repayable finance from £25,000 to £400,000+ to help you build capacity, or to provide cash flow support.

About the Development Fund
Build affordable homes for local communities

Building affordable homes

Loans from £20,000 to over £350,000 to help Community Land Trusts to build affordable homes for their community.

Learn more
Funding and mentoring to social enterprises

Getting social enterprises started

Interest-free loans from £10,000 to £30,000 and mentoring to early-stage social enterprises in Sussex, Croydon and Wales

Learn more


Applying for a social investment loan is a straightforward and painless process. Here’s how we can help:

1 Discuss

We’ll contact you to have a chat about your charity or social enterprise's financial needs, and whether social investment is right for you.

2 Review

The next step is to review your organisation’s finances and projections.

3 Visit

We’ll discuss your growth plans, social impact, governance and management, and visit your organisation to meet you and your trustees.

4 Apply

We’ll then write your application for you.

5 Decision

Our investment committees will review your application and we’ll let you know our decision.

All our customers are different, as are all our funds, but we'll make sure you have the help you need - and we'll guide you to the funds that are right for you.

The social investment application process


Reach Fund - We are an Access Point
If you need extra help with governance, business planning or financial management before taking on repayable finance, we can offer a route to grant funding, provided by Access. Find out more by getting in touch with us, to discuss the support you require:

  • We'll work with you to agree your needs and develop an investment readiness plan.
  • You apply for a grant with our backing. If you're awarded a grant, you can use it to pay for consultancy work, to boost capacity or a mix of both.


Good Finance is a helpful website created to introduce charities and social enterprises to social investment and other finance options available.

It hosts a directory of funders and advisers, as well as case studies showing how charitable organisations are using social investment to grow their impact. And it’s a great resource for any charity or social enterprise that wants to explore whether social finance is right for them.

Read more

Good Finance website for social investment


We are one of the most active providers of impact-focused social investment in the UK. Keep up to date with us as we help charities and social enterprises thrive.

Keep up to date with our blog


View all case studies
How we helped Hubbub with their funding


  • Environment
  • £52,000

Building a movement to increase awareness of environmental issues and change behaviour within communities.

Find out more
local food links

Local Food Links

  • Children and Young People
  • £425,000 (three unsecured loans)

Local Food Links used social investment to expand their kitchens and now produce 3,700 school meals daily across Dorset, using local produce and employing people in the community.

Find out more about Local Food Links
We helped Aspire Gloucestershire with funding to reduce homelessness

Aspire Gloucestershire

  • Children
  • £200,000

Working to reduce homelessness amongst 18-24 year olds in Gloucestershire - and help them back into work or education.

Find out more


  • What is social investment?

    Social investment is the use of capital to achieve both a social and financial return. A social investment loan is not a grant or donation; it’s repayable, often with interest.

  • Is my organisation eligible for social investment?

    The main CAF Venturesome funds help organisations that:

    • are incorporated in the UK
    • have a clear social mission
    • have been trading for at least one year
    • have an annual turnover of at least £60,000

    If you meet this criteria we would love to hear from you

  • What type of social investment is available from CAF Venturesome?
    Most of our social investment loans are unsecured (which means we don't take a charge or security against your assets). Our investments are tailored to the needs of the organisations we finance and can be used for specific projects or to support day-to-day working capital..
  • Are you able to provide social investment across the UK?
    Yes, CAF Venturesome can support organisations across the UK. Read more about our geographical reach here.
  • How long will it take you to review our application?
    The length of the application process depends on how quickly you can provide the information we require. We contact applicants quickly so we can better understand your situation and give you a clear indication of what information will be needed. On average our process from application to approval takes two months, although it can be quicker than that.
  • What happens if our application for funding is successful?

    If your application is successful, we’ll offer you a tailor-made funding package to meet your organisation’s agreed needs. One of our expert team is assigned to support your application and will remain in regular contact throughout the process.

  • Who decides if I receive a social investment loan?

    We hold a monthly investment meeting where the applications we write for you are reviewed and can be approved by a dedicated committee. The discussion will focus on understanding the social impact of your organisation and how our investment will help to increase it, as well as assessing the financial risks of the proposed loan. 

  • What happens if our application for funding is unsuccessful?

    If your application is unsuccessful we’ll do our best to signpost you to other potential sources of funding that may suit your needs.

Want to know more?


Contact our expert team for an initial chat about social investment through CAF Venturesome.

Get in touch now


Is social investment not for you?

Borrow from £50,000 to £5 million with loan repayment terms up to 25 years to undertake a project, purchase a property of refurnish a property, or expand your services.

Social investment webinar

In this webinar we give you practical advice and guidance on how to utilise social investment.

Meet the team behind CAF Venturesome

An introduction to our team, who have a wealth of expertise in helping charities access social investment.