London Community Response launched: Vital funding support offered to London’s civil society groups affected by COVID-19

Press Release -17th March 2020: Coordinated by London Funders, the London Community Response has launched today. With a pot of over £5m – and with more offers of funding in the pipeline – funders have been coming together to create an easy to access process for organisations across the capital to receive emergency financial support.

Funders have recognised that as a result of covid-19, civil society organisations have had the dual negative impact of loss of income and increasing demand - all whilst trying to navigate ‘the new normal’ in service delivery. To start with, the London Community Response is offering funding for urgent needs.

The first wave of funding will be grants of up to £5k for food and essentials. This is in response to funders listening to the capital’s broad and diverse civil society groups about what is immediately required on the ground to keep services going. London Funders has worked with and has had ongoing conversations with a wide variety of sector groups, organisations and representative bodies throughout the past few weeks.

This will not be the only opportunity for London’s civil society to receive grants from the funders behind the London Community Response. There will be a second wave of funding in the next week for larger grants, service transformation costs, and ongoing work to support communities. Funders are also exploring supporting some of the longer-term needs of communities and the sector affected by the crisis.

The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, said: “Voluntary and community organisations are the lifeblood of our city, providing key services to those in need across the capital, but they are struggling to stay afloat during this crisis. I’m really proud to have joined with other funders to launch the London Community Response and have pledged £1 million from City Hall to help our community and voluntary organisations continue to help the most vulnerable with food and essential goods during the challenging days and weeks ahead.

“I continue to urge the Government to join us and make emergency funding available for charities and community organisations so we can help those most at need during this public health crisis.”

The cross sector group of funders who have committed to contributing towards the London Community Response are: The Mayor of London, the City of London Corporation’s Charitable Funder - City Bridge Trust, Bloomberg, John Lyon’s Charity, Trust for London, Paul Hamlyn Foundation and the Julia and Hans Rausing Trust. A broader group of funders have pledged to make grants alongside these funders. Click here for more information.