The European Social Catalyst Fund (ESCF) is an initiative launched in January 2020, designed to have significant impact on some of Europe’s most pressing social challenges. The objective of the ESCF is to bring together public and private resources to improve social services to enable people who need support to live as valued and participating members of their communities. The ESCF provides financial and capacity building support to develop plans to scale proven social service innovations. It is anticipated that these plans will provide details of how public and private resources (philanthropy and/or social investment) can be brought together in a range of collaborations that focus on the role that philanthropy and social finance can play in working with the public sector to help re-focus public spending in a more effective direction in the interest of European citizens. It is intended that during the project a further phase will be designed, based on learning obtained, which will include a focus on supporting implementation of plans to scale proven social service innovations. The ESCF has been established and co-funded by the European Union’s Horizon 2020 Research and Innovation Programme, Genio (Ireland), the Robert Bosch Stiftung (Germany) and the King Baudouin Foundation (Belgium). It awards planning grants across a range of priority social challenge areas within, or across, European Union Member States. The purpose of the grants is to support the development of detailed implementation plans aimed at reducing, or overcoming, social challenges. Innovations were identified through a pan-European call and evaluated against published criteria. The selected applications receive a planning grant of up to €100,000 along with capacity building support. For details on the selected innovations please visit the ESCF website.