Press release: London Community Response total reaches over £8m

1st April 2020: More funders have come together to contribute towards the London Community Response, bringing the total funds pledged to over £8 million.

Coordinated by London Funders – the membership organisation for funders of London’s civil society - funders from across sectors have been coming together to create an easy to access process for organisations across the capital to receive emergency financial support.

The Westminster Foundation, led by the Duke of Westminster, has given £500,000 to the funding pot, while Guy’s and St Thomas’ Charity has put the same amount towards supporting organisations across Lambeth and Southwark. The Clothworkers’ Foundation has pledged £300,000 to support civil society organisations, The Kensington and Chelsea Foundation has allocated £270,000 so far, Islington Giving has ringfenced spending £180,000 to help the sector, and lastly the London Legal Support Trust has given £50,000 in funding. 

And in Southwark, a group of local funders have come together to create a Southwark-specific fund as part of the London Community Response.  Half of the contribution from Guy’s and St Thomas’ Charity is joined by others from United St Saviour’s Charity, Peter Minet Trust and Southwark Charities, with a total of £455,000 earmarked for Southwark’s communities. This local ‘Southwark Community Response Fund’ will be managed by United St Saviour’s Charity and all applications will go through the London Community Response portal. Guy’s and St Thomas’ Charity is also working on a similar dedicated fund for neighbouring Lambeth.

Today’s announcement follows previous funding commitments made by the Mayor of London, the City of London Corporation’s Charitable Funder - City Bridge Trust, Bloomberg, Trust for London, John Lyon’s Charity, Paul Hamlyn Foundation and the Julia and Hans Rausing Trust.

The London Community Response is a result of funders recognising that the covid-19 pandemic is an unprecedented situation for the sector. 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 is for grants of up to £5k for food and essentials, and groups are already submitting applications at with funders working to make decisions and get money flowing as quickly as possible.

More funding waves for strategic grants and long term support are in the pipeline, and more funders will come on board in the upcoming days and weeks. To find out more about developments and future funding opportunities, civil society organisations can sign up to London Funders’ newsletter here.

A spokesperson from the Westminster Foundation said:

“We know how crucial it is to work together to minimise the impact of Covid-19, which is why we’re delighted to commit £500,000 to the London Community Response Fund. The Westminster Foundation is focused on providing help and direction to vulnerable young people living in Westminster. With the full support of the Duke of Westminster, we’re doing all we can to help charities maintain their vital services, especially those supporting children and families who may be struggling to access food during this very difficult time.”

A representative from the Clothworkers' Foundation said:

“The Covid-19 pandemic is having a major impact on community and voluntary sector organisations, and on their service users; with London at the epicentre of the crisis, we are pleased to be able to contribute to the joint initiative during this challenging time.”

About the London Community Response

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, Trust for London, John Lyon’s Charity, Paul Hamlyn Foundation, Westminster Foundation, Guy’s and St Thomas’ Charity, The Clothworkers’ Foundation, The Kensington and Chelsea Foundation, the Julia and Hans Rausing Trust, Islington Giving and the London Legal Support Trust. A broader group of funders have pledged to make grants alongside these funders.

About London Funders

London Funders is the only cross-sector membership network for funders and investors in London’s civil society. We’re uniquely placed to enable funders from all sectors to be effective. We’re focused on collaboration – convening funders to connect, contribute and cooperate together, to help people across London’s communities to live better lives.