What is Red Shed?

Red Shed is Comic Relief's Social Investment team. We invest in charities, social enterprises and impact funds in line with Comic Relief’s Social Change Strategy.

This helps organisations grow, innovate and generate their own income, whilst increasing their social impact. It also means Red Shed can recycle its investments and maximise the impact of its funds. Red Shed provides flexible, patient, impact-first social investment; usually with loans or equity. We also invest in social impact bonds and funds that tackle big systemic social issues. Find out more about our social change strategy here.

If you are a charity, social enterprise, funder or investor interested in talking to us about social investment, please get in touch here(opens in new window).

Our Criteria

Our criteria for making investments are that investees:

  • Are a relevant registered entity

  • Achieve social change in at least one of Comic Relief's 4 key issue areas

  • Work in the UK and/or at least one of Comic Relief’s international priority countries

  • Have at least 6 months’ proof of revenue for their social business

  • Have a clear need for taking on repayable finance and a business model that includes repayment plans

Our Current Investments

Here are some of the social impact organisations that Red Shed currently invests in:

Investments

Fair by design

People on low incomes and in poverty pay more for essential products like energy, credit and insurance than better off households. This is known as the poverty premium. Fair By Design is dedicated to reshaping essential services so they don’t cost more if you’re poor.

Find out more(opens in new window)

RefuAid

RefuAid’s Equal Access Loan Programme provides interest free, character-based loans for refugees from skilled professions to requalify to work in the UK.

Find out more(opens in new window)

Beam

BEAM is the world’s first online platform that crowdfunds employment training for homeless people or those at risk of homelessness.

Find out more(opens in new window)

Sumerian Foundation

The Sumerian Foundation supports pioneering social enterprises and charities with long term impact-first funding and skills support. Red Shed’s investment enables Sumerian to support three social enterprises with a combination of business mentoring and flexible finance to help them grow.

Find out more(opens in new window)

The Social and Sustainable Housing Fund (SASH)

The SASH fund provides loans to enable social impact organisations who provide accommodation-based services to purchase houses.

Find out more(opens in new window)

Meet The Team

Meet The Team Boxes

Tom Colborne

Tom has 20 years' experience working for social impact organisations in project management, business development, strategy and fundraising analyst roles. He joined Red Shed in 2020 and has previously worked for the British Red Cross, TackleAfrica and RedR as well as a spell in investment banking.

Blog

Reflections from the Shed: My 3 years at Comic Relief leading its social investment work

My 3 years at Comic Relief leading its social investment work by Amir Rizwan.