The Robertson Trust is one of Scotland’s leading grant-making funders and funds, supports and champions the work of Scotland’s third sector, helping people experiencing poverty and trauma.
Responding to claims by the Free Church of Scotland at Stirling and the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association Limited that the Trust discriminated against them on grounds of their religious beliefs, Gerry McLaughlin, Vice Chair of the Board of Trustees, said:
“The claim that The Robertson Trust would discriminate against anyone based on religion or for any other reason, is completely unfounded.
“The decision to cancel the hire of The Barracks Conference Centre by the Free Church of Scotland at Stirling and the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, was based entirely on our policy (1) which states that we do not fund or support projects and activities which incorporate the promotion of political or religious beliefs. This has been the case for decades.
“On discovering the breach to our policy, the Trustees took immediate action to cancel the booking and reimburse the heavily subsidised charity rates that had been offered in error to the Free Church of Scotland at Stirling and the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association.
“While we do not fund or support the promotion of any particular religious or political beliefs, the Robertson Trust is proud of its work with faith-based organisations, with whom we work closely to address the issues of poverty and trauma in communities across Scotland. In the last six years, the Trust has funded over 130 religious organisations for their inclusive community projects where promotion of religious beliefs or worship was not core to delivery, providing over £2.5 million.”
Gerry McLaughlin added: “Scotland’s third sector has never been more needed. Our focus remains on funding and supporting their invaluable work, including that of faith-based organisations, to help alleviate the negative impacts of poverty and trauma on people and communities in Scotland.”