City Bridge Foundation’s support for Hackney Giving 

Hackney Giving has a number of funders and one of our longest supporters is City Bridge Foundation, who were formerly known as City Bridge Trust. The new name was chosen to bring together under one banner its dual role as bridge owner and major player in the capital’s charity sector.

City Bridge Foundation’s support for Hackney Giving

City Bridge Foundation has been supportive of Giving schemes across London and it funds Hackney Giving with two grants. The first grant enables us to have a core staff team in place, which meant that we were able to restart Hackney Giving as a grants programme. Hackney Giving ran from 2014 to 2017 and had a break in delivery. City Bridge Foundation funding meant that the programme was able to start up again at the end of 2019 and we have been grant-making again since 2020.

Sarah Watson, Hackney Giving’s Development and Programme Manager, highlights the importance of the City Bridge Foundation’s funding.  She explains: “The more recent grant has been for strategic development of the programme, which is really exciting because it means that we can take Hackney Giving and tell the stories about what we’ve done over the last few years and really get an enthusiasm going in the borough around giving, and around place-based giving in particular. 

“We can show what the voluntary and community sector can achieve and demonstrate Hackney Giving as a means to be able to give to those voluntary community sector organisations that would be beyond the reach of an individual donor.”

The strategic development grant means that Hackney Giving has extra capacity and more staffing. This will enable us to talk to businesses, tell them what we’ve been doing and encourage them to consider supporting Hackney Giving. It also means we can tell our stories locally in the press and on social media. This will help individuals understand what Hackney Giving does and hopefully get them interested in giving.

What the funding has enabled us to do so far 

Without the City Bridge Foundation funding, there would be no Hackney Giving. Sarah explains: “Between April 2020 and September 2023 Hackney Giving distributed more than £2.2 million to voluntary and community sector groups in Hackney and the City of London. Those grants have been about a variety of things: throughout the pandemic, it was around keeping people safe, for example making sure that information flowed out to communities so that people who had barriers to accessing information – such as people who don’t speak or read English, people who don’t use computers and people who have sensory or learning disabilities – were able to keep up to date with about how to keep safe and about the changing rules of what was allowed.” 

More recently Hackney Giving has been giving out grants to do with the cost of living, which is hitting hard with families in Hackney. 

Sarah says: “Although the funding for the grants has come from other sources, without the City Bridge Foundation funding underpinning the Hackney giving staff team, I don’t think we’d be in a position to do that work.”

Future relationships

The City Bridge Foundation supports the concept of place-based giving, which is growing both in the number of schemes and in their strength. Sarah adds: “We’d love to continue to build the relationship between Hackney Giving and City Bridge Foundation into the future.”

For more information, visit City Bridge Foundation’s website

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