Lancashire charity hits £1m in coronavirus funding drive

More than £1m has been given to people in need across Lancashire during the coronavirus crisis.

Friday, 26th June 2020, 5:34 pm
Lancashire Resilience Forum volunteers packing up personal protective equipment

The Lancashire Covid-19 Community Support Fund was set up in April at the start of the coronavirus emergency with the aim of raising £1m for community organisations right across the county.

The drive has now surpassed that amount and organisers have pledged to keep the fund going. A total of £1.3m has been raised and just over £1m given out to 238 community groups, organisations and charities.

The Community Foundation for Lancashire (CFL) – which is managing all donations received to the fund, making sure they reach the most vulnerable people affected by the coronavirus – is working in partnership with the National Emergencies Trust (NET) and Lancashire Resilience Forum.

Funding has also come from local authorities which form the Lancashire Resilience Forum, with partners including police, fire and health. Further donations have come through online giving and direct donations from the public.

The fund is awarding grants to support community organisations which provide crucial services such as foodbanks, delivery of food and care packages to vulnerable and elderly people, telephone and online services offering friendship and support to help reduce isolation, emotional, mental health and domestic violence support and financial inclusion, support to access benefits and debt advice and much more.

Rae Brooke, chief executive for the Community Foundation for Lancashire, said: “What is crucial in any emergency situation is speed of response. Managing to build a fund of more than £1.3m in just over two months – thanks to our excellent partnerships with the Lancashire Resilience Forum, the National Emergencies Trust and many other donors is incredible.

“Over £1m has now been distributed to community groups supporting those in desperate and immediate need. The needs of the most vulnerable will be evident for the foreseeable future. This is why we continue to call on those, with the capacity to do so, to donate to the Lancashire Covid-19 Community Support Fund as we aim to raise £2m.”

Denise Park, chief executive of Blackburn with Darwen Council, on behalf of the fund, said: “This is a wonderful milestone to get to, and I want to give huge thanks to everyone involved who has worked incredibly hard to raise this money and get it to those who desperately need it during this time.

“So many groups have come together in partnership for this fund and it has shown that we really are stronger together. There are so many vital groups and services all over Lancashire and I am thrilled that the community fund has been able to help so many.”

Further details on how to donate can be found here: https://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/fund/lancashirecovid19

Organisations can apply for grants by visiting: https://lancsfoundation.org.uk/funds/lancashire-covid-19-community-support-fund