Helping people thrive


Making a difference in the neighbourhood: East End Community Foundation awards £1million in grants in 2017

14th May 2018
Connecting individuals and businesses with grassroots organisations, East End Community Foundation (EECF) awarded a staggering £1million in grants in 2017 to 194 charitable organisations and community projects across East London.
“As a trusted philanthropic advisor and grant maker serving some of London’s most deprived boroughs, our responsibility is to drive philanthropy to respond to the community needs and aspirations in East London. When awarding grants, our focus is often to identify the impact that the project can have on local people and how we can create a community of support to address a social need,” says Tracey Walsh, EECF chief executive.
Working in close partnership with individual donors, small to medium enterprises and large businesses, the organisation works through the medium of multi-donor grants, which are broadly categorised in three key areas: Employment, Education and Learning, and Community Wellbeing.
In 2017, the 20 Fenchurch Street Legacy Fund, an EECF grant programme primarily focused on delivering employment services in the East End, received £148k from the building’s owner and occupiers and awarded 7 grants to support employment projects in Hackney, Newham and Tower Hamlets. Projects such as Fight for Peace and Streets of Growth, received £15k each, to work with young people who are considered at ‘high risk’ of being involved in gangs, youth violence and anti-social behaviour. Both projects involved one-on-one mentoring, support for (re)entering education or training, employment training, and life-skills workshops which enabled young people to build confidence in seeking employment and further education.  Such is it success the Fund has supported 169 young people into employment in the past year.
Last year, EECF awarded nearly £300,000 in the area of Education and Learning, to create new opportunities for the local people. SportInspired and West Silvertown Village Community Foundation are projects that focused on the development of leadership skills, predominantly in young people, by creating access to sport, exercise and leisure activities. The programmes revealed that when active, creative and team-based games are on offer, children will be drawn to them much more than the electronic devices they are usually drawn to at home. Another positive outcome was, several places were offered for free to children living within food poverty in the borough, enabling them to get the same interaction and engagement that is available to their more fortunate peers.

Community Wellbeing is at the heart of what EECF does. Nearly 35% was awarded to projects that focus on supporting people of all ages and building social relationships within the local community. Trowbridge Senior Citizens Club and Salmagundi Films focus directly on work around reducing isolation and loneliness experienced among the elderly in the East End community. 

With regular activities, such as bingo, exercise classes, tea dances and coach trips were delivered for the elderly. Special training sessions were created to teach how use their smart devices and computers, and to encourage participation and creative learning. Sessions combined practical life skills with therapeutic creative activities.  The projects will culminate in a group sharing event with friends and family, thus extending and strengthening social relationships within the community.