The Wimbledon Foundation has awarded grants totalling £54,000 to 12 charities and community organisations in the London boroughs of Merton and Wandsworth.
The Wimbledon Foundation Community Fund distributes £100,000 annually to support local organisations tackling social problems and helping to reduce inequalities in the two boroughs. This is the fourth round of funding to date and projects supported address a variety of issues including mental health and wellbeing, poverty and isolation.
One of the successful applicants is Mitcham Community Orchard and Gardens, a previously derelict area of land that has been transformed by volunteers into a recreational space and educational resource for the local community. Giles Osborne, Project Lead at Mitcham Community Orchard said, “As a small, volunteer only organisation, it is particularly hard to raise funds and I would like to express our sincere gratitude to the Wimbledon Foundation for their grant. This generous grant will allow us to install a desperately needed permanent water supply and build a solar powered access system so that all local community groups, schools and residents can benefit from this bucolic resource.”
Another charity to benefit is Merton Mencap which supports people with a learning disability to be safer, healthier, and as independent as possible. The grant will enable Merton Mencap to continue running the ‘Gateway Club’, a weekly evening group for adults with a learning disability. Venetia Barton, Fundraising Manager said, “The Wimbledon Foundation’s generosity means our busy evening club is able to continue its valuable work. It provides activities, including accessible exercise and sports, to improve the health and wellbeing of its learning disabled members as well as increasing their inclusion in mainstream society, their confidence and sense of self-worth.”
Grants of up to £5,000 will also enable Wandsworth-based charity Lifetimes to produce a ‘Mental Health in the Community’ manual and deliver training to 200 people in public facing roles while the South London Tamil Welfare Group will start a weekly social group promoting healthy living for isolated older members of the Tamil community in Merton.
Ulrika Hogberg, Wimbledon Foundation & Community Manager said: “Our Community Fund is one of several ways in which the Wimbledon Foundation is making a positive difference and helping to change lives in our local community of Merton and Wandsworth. The diverse range of projects we’re supporting tackle a huge number of social issues from training and employability needs to community cohesion and demonstrates how Wimbledon can be a force for good in society.”
For a full list of funded projects click here.