The Wood Foundation (TWF) is a proactive venture philanthropy funder, focusing on creating economic activity to help people help themselves, providing business development and capacity support, in addition to funding. It was established in March 2007 by Sir Ian Wood and his immediate family, and since retiring from Wood Group in 2012 Sir Ian has been actively involved in the delivery of TWF programmes.
Nine years on, TWF now invests in three areas of activity: Making Markets Work for the Poor in Sub Sahara Africa, Facilitating Economic & Education Development in Scotland, and Making Markets Work for the Poor.
The Foundation invests both money and expertise to achieve systemic change within its chosen areas, recognising that money alone will not solve some of society's greatest inequalities. Whether it's leading projects or taking an active supporting role with strategic partners, The Wood Foundation aims to be involved in development, implementation, training, guidance, and evaluation to enable sustainable and successful programmes.
In East Africa, TWF is the recognised philanthropist in smallholder tea farming and has successfully developed a range of partnership projects in the Tanzania and Rwanda tea sectors, working with and supporting over 45,000 smallholder tea farmers. In the UK, TWF has a strong portfolio focusing on youth philanthropy, global citizenship, developing Scotland's young workforce and childhood poverty.
Originally named the Wood Family Trust, the name was changed to The Wood Foundation on 1st September 2014. This reflects more accurately the way in which the Foundation operates, with the term Foundation highlighting the philanthropic objective while retaining an ability to engage and support a wide diversity of partners in a flexible manner. Likewise, Wood Family Trust Africa also changed to The Wood Foundation Africa.