Crowdfunding platform for homeless people Beam has been awarded a Queen’s Award for Enterprise: one of 205 organisations nationally to be recognised with the award in 2021.
London-based Beam is a winner in the “Promoting Opportunity” category, which recognises social mobility programmes across the UK that help people from disadvantaged backgrounds into successful working lives. The category boasts a record number of winners in the wake of Covid-19, highlighting the business world’s commitment to social impact during the pandemic.
Employing 25 people, the social enterprise was set up in 2017 by CEO Alex Stephany and uses crowdfunding to remove the key barriers facing homeless people when it comes to finding stable jobs and homes. Members of the public donate towards individual crowdfunding campaigns and leave messages of support, while Beam matches beneficiaries with socially-conscious employers and landlords in the capital.
Since launching, Beam has supported more than 250 homeless people into stable jobs and homes and has crowdfunded £2m in donations, 100% of which goes towards the cost of training, travel, childcare, work tools and rental deposits for its beneficiaries. Beam works in partnership with registered charities and local authorities in London, who refer homeless people to its service.
Alex Stephany, founder and CEO of Beam, said:
“We believe that businesses can and must play a positive role in addressing society’s most urgent problems. As a social impact business, Beam is committed to building technology that is just as good as Spotify and Netflix, but for the most disadvantaged people in society. Through this award, we hope to inspire others to use business as a force for good.”