The Nationwide Foundation becomes a Living Wage Friendly Funder

The Nationwide Foundation is leading the way by joining the Living Wage Foundation’s new scheme for charity funders.

In becoming a Living Wage Friendly Funder, the Nationwide Foundation will be ensuring the Living Wage is paid in the staff posts it funds to carry out projects.

The Nationwide Foundation is an independent charitable funder which so far has given over £30 million to charitable causes. It seeks to help people in need in the UK by creating decent, affordable homes. Ensuring that fair wages are paid is an obvious and simple way of tackling poverty and disadvantage.

The minimum wage in the UK is currently £6.70 an hour (£7.20 from 1st April 2016) in the UK, but the UK Living Wage, which is set independently by the Living Wage Foundation and calculated in accordance to the basic cost of living in the UK, is considerably higher at £8.25, rising to £9.40 in London.

Leigh Pearce, the Nationwide Foundation’s chief executive says: “The Living Wage is a robust calculation that reflects the real cost of living. Working in the charity sector, we come across the huge problems caused by poverty and economic disadvantage every day and so as a responsible funder, we will be ensuring that where our grants are supporting employment, that these workers are paid fairly with a Living Wage.”

Sarah Vero, director, Living Wage Foundation says: “We are delighted to recognise the Nationwide Foundation as a Living Wage Friendly Funder. The leadership shown by the Nationwide Foundation demonstrates a commitment to tackling the serious problems that low pay brings to our communities.

“Many organisations in the voluntary and community sectors are working hard to tackle social injustice and poverty; it’s only right that those committed to these roles are afforded at least a Living Wage. We hope to see many more funders and corporates follow the lead of the Nationwide Foundation and the other Living Wage Friendly Funders.

“At a time when half of those in poverty live in a household where someone has a job, the Living Wage is much needed by families across the UK. The Living Wage is a robust calculation that reflects the real cost of living, rewarding a hard day’s work with a fair day’s pay.”


Contact: Natalie Tate, communications, policy and public affairs manager,

The Nationwide Foundation, 07826 536858,

Notes to editors

About the Nationwide Foundation

  • Follow @NationwideFdtn
  • Nationwide Foundation is an independent charitable funder. The principle benefactor of the Nationwide Foundation is
  • Nationwide Building Society.
  • The Nationwide Foundation is a registered charity (no 1065552) and has limited liability being a company limited by guarantee registered in England and Wales (no. 3451979). Registered office address: Nationwide House, Pipers Way, Swindon, SN38 1NW.

About the UK Living Wage

  • The UK Living Wage is an hourly rate set independently and updated annually. It is calculated according to the basic cost of living in the UK and employers choose to pay it on a voluntary basis.
  • The Living Wage Foundation recognises and celebrates the leadership shown by Living Wage employers across the UK.
    It is an initiative of Citizens UK and offers accreditation to employers that pay the living wage, or those committed to an agreed timetable of implementation, by awarding the ‘Living Wage Employer’ mark. There are now 2,100 accredited Living
  • Wage Employers across the UK.
  • The Living Wage Friendly Funder scheme recognises grant makers that support charities to pay the Living Wage through their grant-making:
  • Follow the Living Wage Foundation on twitter @LivingWageUK and find out more about the
  • Friendly Funder Scheme using #FriendlyFunders

The Friendly Funder Framework

Living Wage Friendly Funders agree to three sequential core principles:

PRINCIPLE ONE: Become an accredited Living Wage Employer with the Living Wage Foundation. Find out more about this and start the process at

PRINCIPLE TWO: Pay the Living Wage to grant funded posts or be demonstrably working towards paying this over a period of time agreed with the Living Wage Foundation.

Living Wage Friendly Funders seek to ensure that all posts which are wholly or partially funded by the funder pay the Living Wage, unless there are particular reasons for this not to happen (these might include difficulties in maintaining differentials, and the impact on other posts within the grantee’s workforce).

PRINCIPLE THREE: Support grantees to become Living Wage Employers by signposting them towards:

  • The Living Wage Foundation
  • Other Living Wage Friendly Funders
  • Other Living Wage VCS organisations in their area

About the UK Living Wage

National Minimum Wage (including the ‘national living wage’ The Living Wage
The legal minimum an employee can earn in an hour. Employers break the law if they fail to pay this rate A voluntary rate that employers commit to pay in order to go above and beyond. The Living Wage Employer Mark is a sign of best practice
The ‘national living wage’ rate will be £7.20 an hour from April 2016 The current UK Living Wage is £8.25 an hour. The current London Living Wage is £9.40 an hour
This will increase each year, with the aim of reaching 60% of the median wage across the country by 2020 (this would mean around £9 an hour but the Low Pay Commission will consider what the market can bear) This will increase in line with the cost of living with increases announced in Living Wage Week every year
Different rates apply depending on the age of the employee. The ‘national living wage’ is for over 25s only The Living Wage is the same for all employees over the age of 18
Set by the Low Pay Commission Set by the Living Wage Foundation
Based on an estimation of what the market can bear Based on the cost of living
The rates are the same right across the UK There is a separate rate for London to reflect the higher cost of living in the Capital