The Trust's Organisation
The Trust has its Headquarters at Beit House in Woking, Surrey. Their Representative in Africa and his two staff work from a rented office in Harare.
Trustees meet every six months to agree broad strategy on investments, reserves and risk management, and to consider applications for grants. They are supported by a Committee of regional Correspondents, three or four per beneficial country. These meet six weeks before Trustees’ meetings to give their expert advice on each grant application.
Nearly £1.3 million was made available in 2017 for new projects, mostly infrastructural, selected in-country by the Correspondents. In addition, Trustees every year customarily allocate over £1 million to long-term recurrent grants, for academic and medical scholarships and bursaries, student hardship relief, library books, school computers and contingency support.
The Trust’s Finance Committee meets four weeks prior to full Trustees’ meetings. Cazenove Capital, the portfolio investment managers, attend and address finance and investment policy matters. In November, the Finance Committee submits to the Trustees, for their approval, a proposed budget of income and expenditure for the forthcoming year.
Ethical and Socially Responsible Investment Policy
Trustees abide by the restrictions against holding ordinary shares in mining stocks stipulated in Alfred Beit’s Will. They delegate to their investment managers, Cazenove Capital, the responsibility for taking environmental, social and governance (ESG) issues into account when assessing the selection, retention and realisation of investments. They expect the fund manager to engage with companies on ESG issues; observe best practice; exercise voting rights accordingly; and monitor the implementation of this policy.