• Sunday, July 03, 2022

HEADLINE STORY

BAME-led organisations in the UK to get £7m funding boost

Dhruv Patel, Chairman of the City of London Corporation’s City Bridge Trust Committee

By: Pramod Thomas

AS MANY AS 159 black, Asian and and minority ethnic (BAME)-led organisations in the UK will get £7 million funding from a Covid-19 crisis fund.

These organisations are delivering sorely-needed services such as food banks, mental health support and assistance for domestic violence victims, in communities disproportionately affected by the pandemic.

The aid is from the London community response fund administered by charity funder City Bridge Trust, in partnership with the National Lottery Community Fund (NLCF).

“BAME communities already suffering injustice, inequality and disadvantage have been hit particularly hard by the pandemic, and voluntary and community groups are often left to pick up the pieces. This funding will help these organisations deliver what is in many cases life-saving support, helping communities to weather the storm of the continuing crisis and to build for the future,” said Dhruv Patel, chairman of City Bridge Trust committee.

The London community response fund, part of the wider London community response, has distributed over £25m since March. The National Lottery Community Fund committed £7m, of which £3.9m went to BAME-led organisations.

Southall Black Sisters, which works to challenge domestic and gender-related violence against BAME women, saw a near 200 per cent surge in calls and online enquiries when the first lockdown lifted.

The organisation was awarded a £48,517 grant for a triage system delivered via an online chat application, to ensure women in need of support get the assistance they need promptly.

Kilburn-based Henna Asian Women’s Group received a £36,500 grant for a mental health project offering online and telephone counselling, group therapy and art therapy for women who have been heavily impacted by Covid-19.

Elly De Decker, England director at The National Lottery Community Fund, said: “The response from communities to the pandemic has been truly inspiring, and we’re proud to be working alongside City Bridge Trust to ensure vital funding reaches those who have been disproportionately impacted by Covid-19.”

Islington-based The Big House offers young care leavers opportunities to take part in arts, drama and creative activities, alongside long-term pastoral support.

It will use its £49,751 grant for a project entitled The Hot House, which will give young BAME people the chance to work with a professional writer to co-author and act in a production based on the challenges of Covid-19, a statement said.

The funding supports the work of the City Corporation’s Tackling Racism Taskforce, set up in June to tackle racism in all its forms.

It is working for changes in areas including staffing, governance and education. The taskforce will make recommendations on how to respond to statues and other city landmarks with links to slavery and historic racism Taskforce later this year.

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