Money Makes Change:
Put your faith and values into action by investing in a fairer, greener world.
People of faith have historically steered clear of investing in certain industries, to avoid causing harm.
Known as negative screening this approach might include avoiding tobacco, weapons, alcohol, gambling or pornography.
Today, many Christians and churches are choosing to divest (move money away) from fossil fuels too.
Read about the Church of Scotland’s divestment from oil and gas.
We can use our investments to push companies to change for the better.
This approach includes shareholder engagement and AGM activism.
Find out how The Methodist Church engages with companies.
You might not have your own investments but if you have a pension, your pension provider engages with companies and votes on shareholder resolutions on your behalf, with increasing focus on the climate crisis.
We can choose to invest in companies that are working for a fairer, greener future.
This approach is often called impact investing.
Learn more about the Church of England’s social impact investing.
You might look at environmental, social and governance criteria (ESG) when choosing a fund or invest directly in companies that have a positive social or environmental impact.
What can I do?
If you are exploring ethical investment as an individual or on behalf of a congregation it can be confusing to know where to start. The three approaches outlined above are a good place to begin.
- AVOID: What do I/we want to avoid investing in?
- ENGAGE: How could I/we engage with companies for change?
- EMBRACE: Where could I/we invest to help shape a fairer, greener world?
There are lots of ways to invest in line with your values. For example, you could:
- buy shares in a company
- invest in a managed fund
- choose an ethical stocks & shares ISA
- help finance a new project through a crowdfunding platform like Ethex
- invest in community shares to support a community business or co-operative.
Start by reading this short introduction to ethical investing. Could you share this article with your church?
Ethical investing has many labels, including faith-consistent, sustainable, responsible, positive, impact, ESG (environmental, social & governance) or green. Explore the language around investing with this helpful jargon buster.
Your church may be investing funds on behalf of its members. Ask your church treasurer or council if you want to find out more about how that money is invested.
Investors can use a variety of tactics to campaign for change. Different issues may demand different responses.
Shareholders can raise concerns at company AGMs. At JustMoney Movement we are seeking change in banks’ financing of plastics pollution through this approach. Read about our Don’t Bank on Plastics action at HSBC’s AGM.
We want to attend more AGMs to ask companies questions about their conduct, and seek positive change. You don’t have to have your own shares to get involved. We work with the charity ShareAction who provide training and support. Get in touch if you are interested in AGM activism!
A growing movement of Christians are moving their money away from carbon-intensive companies that fuel the climate crisis. Operation Noah’s Bright Now campaign is calling on churches to divest from fossil fuel companies.
JustMoney Movement does not provide financial advice. Please read our disclaimer. But we can help you reflect on the ethics of your investments and signpost you to useful sources of information.
Explore the links on this page and contact us if you have any questions or would like support in exploring ethical investing with your congregation.
Use UKSIF’s directory to find a financial adviser who understands ethical and sustainable investments.
Learn more about the work of the Church Investors Group.
Ruth and Mike share their story of investing for a fairer world through Shared Interest.
Reflect and pray
Are there companies or sectors that you want to avoid investing in? Do you want to use your investments to seek positive change?
God of love,
guide me to look carefully at my investments
and use them to do good not harm.
Help me to pursue justice and to love my neighbour
through the decisions I make with money.
Want to explore in more depth some Biblical principles that could guide your investment decisions? We asked friends at Theos and Christian Aid to share their thinking on a theology of investment – watch the webinar here.
Share your story
Get in touch and share your #MoneyMakesChange story.
I try to use my money to make society fairer. I save with a local mutual Building Society and hold community shares, a form of co-operative investment, in projects that I believe in.Richard, Birmingham