Islington Giving gave out £1million to borough’s charities last year

Arts charity All Change has received funding from Islington Giving. Here it took people on a tour of

Arts charity All Change has received funding from Islington Giving. Here it took people on a tour of The Emirates as part of its Inside Islington Tour. Picture: Leticia Valverdes - Credit: Archant

An Islington charity handed out more than £1million to organisations in the borough last year, bringing its total since forming in 2010 to £6m.

The biggest sum given by Islington Giving went to the Big Alliance, who received £375,000 for their work in strengthening links between businesses, schools and community groups.

Using money raised by the Cripplegate Foundation, donations and fundraising, the charity provides grants to organisations in the borough that work to reduce poverty, help deprived young people, or connect isolated people to the rest of the community.

Beginning as a temporary campaign with the goal of raising £3m in three years, the charity smashed their target and realised it would be foolish to stop there.

“It came off the back of a piece of work conducted by the Cripplegate Foundation in 2008 called Invisible Islington,” said Sam Stensland, who joined the charity in 2016.

“It outlined the huge differences in equality and poverty across the borough – like children who were going to school without lunches, for example.”

The charity uses an independent grants commission to choose which organisations they think will have the greatest impact on the area.

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“We want to reach a lot of people, but it’s not just about numbers,” Sam said. “We try to give strategically, to organisations which think about the longer term benefits on the community.”

More than 60 organisations have received donations, with the focus turning to families for 2018.

“In our public consultation, ‘a life not a service’, we went out to the community and asked what they’d like to see,” Sam said.

“Families wanted to have more normal experiences.

“If they’d had difficulties with money, they wanted to be able to go to classes or have opportunities to go to activities in the area. It’s about flexibility and access.”

The official list of recipients for the first batch of this year’s funding is yet to be drawn up.

But organisations which offer support for parents and disadvantaged families are the priority, the charity has said.

To find out more about Islington Giving, visit the website

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