Almost 65 million of vital National Lottery funding has gone to communities across England this quarter* to support them as they recover from the pandemic, helping them to build back stronger into the New Year and beyond.
The life-enhancing sum, distributed by The National Lottery Community Fund, the largest funder of community activity in the UK, has been awarded to over 2,000 community groups and will support communities as they continue rebuilding after two incredibly challenging years.
Over half of the 65 million cash boost has reached the most deprived areas in England according to the Index of Multiple Deprivation, including Birkenhead, Hartlepool and Leeds, with such areas receiving a 72% share (45.7 million). The projects funded are important to communities and range from mental health support groups for farmers to help reduce isolation, a creative space to help young people learn new skills and get into employment, and the provision of mental health and wellbeing support for homeless people through a mobile consulting room.
John Mothersole, Chair of England Committee at The National Lottery Community Fund, said:
Thanks to National Lottery players, we have been able to award almost 65 million of life changing funding across England in the last three months alone, supporting communities to rebuild from the challenges of the last two years. This vital funding will have a huge impact on people's lives, on the communities we live in and on the incredible volunteers and groups that will help our communities to build back stronger, prosper and thrive.
Through almost 2,000 charities and community groups, we have funded urgent issues that affect us all and are at the heart of communities, including employability, mental health, supporting young people and helping people become better connected to tackle loneliness. We're proud to be awarding this money and we know it will make a difference to people's lives and communities.
The announcement comes shortly after The National Lottery Community Fund released a new report, Putting Communities First, which sets out the impact National Lottery funding has had on communities across the UK over the last five years.
The report shows that on average 5.2 million people across the country a year were supported by National Lottery-funded projects, with 97% of grant holders reporting improvements in their participants' mental health, self-esteem and social contact.
National Lottery players raise 30 million each week across the UK for good causes. The National Lottery Community Fund as a distributor ensures a share of this funding goes straight to communities, helping them to tackle important issues such as supporting young people into employment, mental health and climate action.
During the pandemic, in 2020 alone, The National Lottery Community Fund distributed almost 1 billion to charities and community organisations across the UK.