Baptist Building CIO seeks to partner with Baptist churches by offering loans and grants to transform church buildings for mission.
Our charity is a lasting testimony to the group of London Baptist ministers who were blessed with the vision of setting up the Baptist Building Fund (BBF) in London in 1824, to help ministers and congregations to raise funds to build churches. At first we gathered donations from wealthy sponsors and made grants to churches across the British Isles; later, we moved to providing interest-free loans, so that we could recycle our funds to help more churches. Over the years hundreds of churches in the UK and Ireland have benefited from our loans and grants to help build new premises or develop existing churches to help in God’s mission. Baptist Building CIO has recently taken over the activities of BBF and continues this good work.
HOW ARE WE FUNDED?
We don’t charge interest on our loans, but most churches make a thank-offering donation to us once their loan is repaid. This is a primary source of funding and helps us to cover our administration costs and to help more churches.
In the early years, churches would nominate us to receive the proceeds of sale of the building if the church closed. Although this is no longer the case, from time to time we receive also such proceeds which is used to fund our ongoing work.
Where we receive proceeds of sale from a closed church, currently our policy is that:
75% of the net sale proceeds are made available for loans, and
25% of the net sale proceeds are allocated to the Empowering Change Fund, which makes grants to small churches in rural and deprived areas to enable them to adapt buildings to transform their mission
HOW DO WE USE OUR FUNDS?
Our funds are mainly used to provide loans to Baptist churches to enable them to expand, repair and improve their premises. Our Trustees wish to use the funds available to assist churches rather than making investments. At the end of 2021, 48% of the funds available had been advanced to churches by way of loans, including £350,000 in new loans, with potential loan enquiries for an additional 24% of our funds.
Grants from the Empowering Change Fund are made to Baptist churches as contributions towards small building projects for missional activities. Without this work being carried out, each church would have to restrict their community ministry. Our Trustees aim to maximise the impact of these limited funds, and in 2021 over £75,000 was paid out in grants to 6 churches, with funds available for more grants in 2022.
Charity expenditure (excluding grants and costs associated with ultimate trusts) is modest at 0.6% of total funds in 2021, and is incurred in promoting the aims and awareness of the charity, and dealing with its administration.
Our current board of 10 Trustees have a range of professional backgrounds including finance, law, property and leading church ministry, and they bring the benefit of their expertise to the role. All Trustees give their time freely to the work of this charity.
WORKING IN PARTNERSHIP
Our aim is always to work in partnership with churches to support them in their missional work through our loans and grants. We are independent of all the Baptist Unions and networks in the UK but we seek to work closely with them, including the Baptist Union of Great Britain, the Baptist Union of Scotland, the Baptist Union of Wales and the Grace Baptist Trust Corporation.
Baptist Building CIO is the sole trustee of Baptist Building Fund, a charity registered in England & Wales with registered Charity Number 218823