What is Dragons Den?
Since 2012, Carol Akiwumi MBE, CEO and Founder of Money4YOU, has convened the annual Dragons Den event. It’s named after the BBC TV show, and brings an audience of Black, Asian, multi-ethnic, and refugee (BAMER)-led non-profits together with grant-makers to pitch for grants, network, and celebrate the work of the BAMER-led voluntary sector.
How can I get involved?
At our 2023 event, we’ll be placing a renewed emphasis on participatory grant-making.
Participatory grant-making is about placing the people and communities affected by the issues we’re tackling at the core of decision-making on what to fund and how to fund it. With audience voting at Dragons Den, we’ve been putting it into practice for many years—but this year, we want to go one step further.
We know that giving is powerful. To embed participation at every level of grant-making, we need collective funds, with a wide range of sources, where every stakeholder has a say in the process.
Will you help us show the world what truly participatory grant-making looks like in 2023?
What impact did the 2022 event create?
At Dragons Den 2022, the tenth anniversary event, Money4YOU was awarded a generous £100,000 grant by City Bridge Trust to support organisations whose work benefits Londoners. We were able to distribute grants of up to £20,000 to multiple BAMER-led non-profits, allowing them to continue their vital work after the challenges brought on by the pandemic and cost-of-living crisis.
We also hosted an insightful panel discussion with funders and charity sector leaders on reimagining funding for BAMER-led non-profits, and published a brief report on the panel.
We received 45 video pitches prior to the event, and 12 organisations were shortlisted to present their ideas to the audience on the night. Seven organisations won grants.
“This is beneficial for people wanting to clarify their pitch and reach funders in a more personal way. Networking with funders is a sphere that grassroots Black and working-class-led multicultural groups have systematically been excluded from.”A.S.Regular Attendee
Soccology wins a £20,000 grant.
Get Rid Of And Donate wins a £10,000 grant.
Lerato Community Initiative wins a £5,000 grant.
To commemorate our tenth anniversary, we also gave out special awards based on our four core values: Integrity, Inspiration, Intelligence and Interaction. Twelve outstanding BAMER-led organisations were nominated and the winners were as follows:
In 20th October 2023, we will support, recognise and celebrate even more BAMER-led organisations from across the UK with our eleventh annual event.
We are committed to creating sustainable solutions for our community and making a lasting impact. We invite you to join us in this journey and be part of the change by donating. Let’s build a better future for our communities—one that is more equal and more inclusive.
Dragons Den gets a new name in 2023
In its 11th year, and as part of our acceleration towards participatory models in everything we do, our BAMER HUB community is suggesting and voting on new names for Dragons Den.
We’d love for you to be part of the change.
Migrants’ Rights Network wins the Interaction Award, presented by Kunle Olulode MBE, Director at Voice4Change England.
The Black Cultural Archives wins the Inspiration Award.
The Ubele Initiative team with their Intelligence Award.
Rose from Sistah Space accepts the Integrity Award.