Community Benefit update: Spring 2020

It’s a year since we commissioned Locality to help deliver the Community Benefit Fund in London – and a lot has happened since then!

All our operations, of course, have been affected by the Coronavirus and the consequent lockdown, not least our grantees. LHC has played its part in supporting the community sector in this difficult time. We are supporting current grantees to modify their projects and to emerge from the crisis in good health.

Since the last update we have made new awards to:

  • Hackney Play bus – to start a social prescribing project
  • Urban MBA – an innovative enterprise course in Hackney
  • Wendover Dementia Friendly Consortium in Buckinghamshire – towards a ‘magic table’ – an interactive activity.
  • The Autism Hub in Hillingdon – to develop a social prescribing offer for autistic adults.
  • Haringey’s Covid-19 appeal to support hot meal production and delivery and work with homeless families.

RISE Projects

Some of the LHC team joined our Chair John Bevan and our partners to visit RISE Projects in Haringey.

RISE Projects is a community empowerment and skills development organisation that aims to empower local people in Haringey.

Our grant of £5,000 will fund a project that brings together people living in the areas of Turnpike Lane and Wood Green to reduce incidences of knife crime and create safer communities.

Covid-19 – “We stand with the sector”

LHC Community Benefit Fund has joined with the esteemed company of 250 funders in London in signing up to a pledge recognising that the Covid-19 outbreak is an exceptional event. Where grantees are affected by the outbreak we are committed to flexibility, discussion of adapting activities and dates and listening to grantees.

In our mini survey:

  • 10% of projects said they are carrying on and finding that the need for their project is greater at the current time.
  • 10% said there had been little effect
  • 70% will need to make modifications because of Covid-19
  • 30% are unable to deliver now but will (re) start after the lockdown is over

One of our early grantee’s is Octopus Community Network in Islington. Their project was to support three community hubs to deliver projects addressing food poverty. They have been able to modify their project to support the delivery of food to vulnerable households.

At the end of the year we were able to provide a contribution to Haringey’s Covid-19 appeal run by our friends at Haringey Giving. Our contribution of £5,130 went towards:

Caris Haringey to work with and on behalf of homeless families in temporary accommodation, families who living in unsecured accommodation and destitute and, asylum seekers, refugees and migrants.

The Antwerp Arms, a community pub in Tottenham, to support a hot meal production and delivery operation to serve vulnerable groups of individuals during the COVID 19 lockdown period.

Awards made recently:

Hackney Play Bus – social prescribing project £4,543

Hackney’s social prescribing programme engages with parents and carers who may visit the GP with health issues but where conversation indicates that they may have non-medical unmet needs. This project will build Hackney Plays Bus’s capacity to work with social prescribing, establishing referral procedures, following up referrals, providing a proper welcome to referred clients and monitoring their journey with our project.

Urban MBA £5,000

We have recently awarded Urban MBA which is an enterprise training programme in Hackney designed to reach young adults who are what is described as NEETs (Not in Education, Employment or Training).

Described as a ‘University for Street Entrepreneurs’ Urban MBA uses language and communication tools to which participants can relate and understand. The course is a 12-week Open College Network (OCN) accredited Business Diploma Level 2

Buckinghamshire – Wendover Dementia Friendly Consortium £4,496

Towards providing a ‘Magic table’. This is a projector which creates bright, moving image displays on a table that participants can interact with by playing games, completing challenges. Through its use by people with Dementia and other conditions, professionals have witnessed positive changes in emotional stability, mood and outlook, sense of self-worth and belonging, physical effort and energy levels, social involvement and interaction and the ability to share and enjoy group activities!

Hillingdon Autistic Care and Support (HACS): £7,165

The Autism Hub project will develop a social prescribing offer for autistic adults in Hillingdon. It will increase their active involvement in the community, reducing loneliness and social isolation. This will be a coproduction model with beneficiaries at the centre of planning and considered equal partners in the design and delivery of the project. The project will identify lifestyle challenges at an early stage and help individuals take control of their health and well being and draw upon a wider network of support from non-clinical services.


For more information or any queries on the fund please go to


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