Grant-maker donates £2.5m to causes affected by coronavirus

The Indigo Trust has pledged £2.5m to ensure charities can keep serving communities throughout the coronavirus crisis and beyond.

The grant-maker, which is part of the Sainsbury Family Charitable Trust, has pledged £1m to the Trussell Trust to support the running of food banks across the country, which are facing disrupted supply chains, a fall in the number of volunteers and a rise in demand.

It has also pledged money to support other funders, donating £1m to the National Emergencies Trust's coronavirus appeal, and £500,000 to the Oxfordshire Community Foundation to re-grant to organisations most in need in the local area.

The think tank NPC welcomed the move, saying funders needed to offer coordinated funding that would not only support charities immediately now, but also in the medium term as the continuing impact of the crisis became clear. It is expected imminently to release guidance for philanthropists on the most strategic way to give.

The grants come after the announcement of a £1m grant pot for small charities affected by the pandemic from the money-saving expert Martin Lewis and pledges of £1m by both Sadiq Khan, the Mayor of London, and the City Bridge Trust for charities in the capital

In a statement, the Indigo Trust said it expected to give further significant grants as the need arose, and would be making grants over the next few days that would represent 250 per cent of the value of its normal annual giving.

It said the trust anticipated significantly increasing its normal annual giving over a 12 to 18-month period to help civil society rebuild and grow.

Fran Perrin, Indigo’s founder and trustee, and her husband, William Perrin, who is also a trustee, said in a statement that the grants were aimed at alleviating suffering during the crisis at national level and in local communities.

“We are currently in a national emergency to which charities and wealthy individuals need to immediately respond, changing as necessary their pre-existing funding priorities, amounts and processes,” the statement said, adding that the strategy behind the grant had been influenced by the charity’s work with NPC.

“Donors should look to their local communities, other less fortunate communities and the national interest.”

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