As many of you are aware, here at Victoria Eggs, we’re delighted that our office falls under the lovely borough of Islington. You could picture beautiful Victorian houses, wide leafy streets and trendy coffee bars and restaurants bustling with custom, and you would be quite right. But did you also know that Islington is one of the top 10 most deprived boroughs in London? Unfortunately, Islington also has one of the highest child poverty rates in the city, despite its cool, affluent reputation. This is why, in 2010, well-known trusts and foundations teamed up to launch Islington Giving. Amongst these foundations were The Breadsticks Foundation, The City Bridge Trust, Cripplegate Foundation, The Morris Charitable Trust, and Richard Cloudesley’s Charity. It was amongst this team of individuals that the start of Islington’s fight to end poverty began.
Islington Giving offers its support to the community by raising money to fund local projects such as providing young people with activities where they can build confidence and social skills. In addition, Islington Giving set up the BIG Alliance in 2012 to further tackle the issue of poverty. The BIG Alliance allows local businesses to get involved in helping ease the effects of neediness through offering opportunity, employment, and service. Islington is often overlooked due to the perceptions that it’s not an area in need of great funding, and efforts are then focused instead to problem areas in the East End of the city. So the BIG Alliance is working hard to raise awareness, that Islington is also in need.
The BIG Alliance primarily focuses on unemployment, opportunities and education. Local businesses are encouraged to show support by giving those who are struggling to find employment, possible job positions. Education is also a key component; both businesses and schools are pulling together in an effort to inspire, and increase the aspirations and goals of students. This idea will hopefully lay the foundations for a driven and inspired work force in years to come, which will continue to support the community.
Since its start just five short years ago, Islington Giving has raised over £2million in an effort to support local projects, in addition to taking on more than 1000 volunteers, and shows its support for over 40 organisations.
If Islington Giving has taught us anything, it’s that there’s more than one way to skin a cat. And there’s more than one way to help the battle against poverty. From donating money, volunteering your time, volunteering your services or skills, and fundraising, there’s always an option for you to lend a helping hand.