The 2017/18 Annual Review of Islington Council’s Community Chest has been released by Islington Council and Cripplegate Foundation.
With an overview of grants awarded through the Community Chest, and stories from local organisations Blackstock Triangle Gardners, Creative Opportunities CIC, Bridging the Gap, the Review gives an insight into the vibrancy of Islington’s voluntary sector.
There was a majority of applications from organisations working to reduce isolation and increase levels of involvement in the communitym, which reflects the national conversation around the negative impacts of loneliness.
The funding environment for small organisations has come under pressure in recent years. Research from The Foundation for Social Improvement shows a large increase in demand on the services of small charities. From June 2013 to February 2018, demand on these small but vital organisations has increased by 134%. There have been some important rallying cries in support of the work of small charities, captured recently in the Lloyds Bank Foundation for England and Wales' commissioned report, The value of small.
Islington's Executive Member for Community Development, Cllr Kaya Comer-Schwartz, who is also Chair of the Islington Council's Community Chest Grants Panel, reflected on another successful year of the partnership by saying:
I am delighted that in the face of increasing financial pressure, our council has been able to continue to work in partnership with Cripplegate. We intend to continue to fund the Community Chest for the next three years. I look forward to seeing how Islington will, as ever, take the small investment we provide and create a huge amount of value to the borough, by giving time as volunteers, bringing communities together and improving the lives of local people.
Councillor Kaya Comer-Schwartz