Fondazione Cassa di Risparmio di Firenze
The creation of Ente Cassa di Risparmio di Firenze in 1992 represented the continuation of the traditions of the Cassa di Risparmio di Firenze, founded in 1829 by one hundred illustrious Florentine citizens who each contributed to the founding fund. The main objective was to promote saving among the poorer social classes and to support socio-economic development by donating banking profits to initiatives for the public good. In 2000, a new statute and operational structure were established in line with prior objectives, namely to support those in need of solidarity, rehabilitation and assistance.
Fondazione Cassa di Risparmio Firenze (FCRF) is a foundation with banking origins, according to the It. Law no. 218/1990. Established in 1992, FCRF carries on the social and philanthropic initiatives in the footsteps of the former saving banking (Statute, Article 3, § 1). The objectives of its mission are determined by law (It. Lgs.D. no. 153/1999) and is transposed in the Foundation Statute (Statute, Article, §§ 2-3).
In the specific, FCRC activities converge on 5 macro-areas, intending to promote culture and art, conserving and enhancing the cultural, landscape, environmental and agricultural heritage of Florence and Tuscany territories. Further, FCRF supports scientific research and technological innovation even in the medical and health field and the education of young people. Finally, it promotes voluntary work and associations and is committed to helping those in need of solidarity, care and rehabilitation (Statute, Article, §§ 4-5).
From the operative perspective, FCRF philanthropic activities evolve in two main directions. On one side, FCRF directly supports its projects or operating entities. On the other, it provides contributions to third parties initiatives aligned with its own statutory and programmatic aims. Additionally, FCRF works promoting grants and tenders (Statute, Article 4).
The region of Tuscany in Italy (specifically Florence, Grosseto and Arezzo)
FCRC activities converge on 5 macro-areas:
1) Arts and Culture - two main sectors: (A) artistic and cultural initiatives, and (B) protection and enhancement of national artistic and historical heritage. Their activities intend to support artistic productions and promote the educative, social and economic dimension of arts and culture. Additionally, FCRF, in these fields, encourages community accountability in the protection of the local cultural heritage.
2) Charities and Volunteering - support third-sector and second-welfare initiatives. One of the main objectives of this area is to promote local associations involved in contrasting the leading causes of social and economic vulnerability (i.e. the breakdown of family relationships, unemployment, economic instability, housing crisis). The main actions, therefore, converge on disadvantage groups (e.g. older people, children, migrants and those with any kind of disability).
3) Research and Technological Innovation - focuses its efforts on the professional advancement of young scholars and researchers and the enhancement of the local centers of excellence in research. Both these needs come out from the local scientific and academic contexts, and the investments made by FCRF give a significant contribution to leading institutions activities. In particular, the Foundations, in this field, aims to bridge the gap between academic research and the world of business, fostering fruitful partnership among the different local actors.
4) Education - promotes accessibility and inclusiveness in educational and vocational programs–and this to overcome the shortcomings due to the current weaknesses of the traditional educational pathways and options. FCRF aims to enhance access to educative services; prevent early school leaving and develop new capacities in vocational consultancy and advisory services.
5) Environmental Protection - carries on specific actions, promoting social participation and involvement in the safeguards the local territories and landscapes. In this regard, FCRF supports the local actors more involved in this field, improving their planning and management capacities. Additionally, the Foundation even cooperates with local public institutions to foster sustainable developments initiatives and policies.