City Bridge Trust is London’s largest independent charitable funder, working towards their goals of connecting communities and building partnerships for a fairer London. A founding member of Islington Giving, our partnership has enabled us to test innovative place-based approaches. Islington Giving was the first Giving Scheme, established in 2012, which has since inspired over 20 other giving schemes in London. City Bridge has been a significant supporter of the giving movement.
Some of the programmes City Bridge have supported included:
The Saturday Socials project was created in response to research and feedback from our community partners that showed older people in the borough were feeling most isolated and lonely on the weekends, when it felt like the rest of the world was busy. Working with three key community partners to deliver the programme – Cubbitt, All Change, and North London Cares – the aim of Saturday Socials was to test new approaches to reaching and engaging isolated older people and help older people to physically access spaces and opportunities that they may have previously thought “weren’t for them”.
The socials have included tea dances, Grand National parties, gardening events, film nights, games sessions, arts workshops, stadium tours, pubs, clubs and more – and have also brought together younger and older groups to bridge gaps between generations and create new connections in the community.
Support from City Bridge helped Islington Giving to develop a central part of our work – sharing power with residents through resident-led funding programmes. This began with our Young Grant Makers programme, which since 2018 has welcomed 12 young people each year to run a funding call to support projects which benefit young people in Islington. Since the launch of the programme in 2018, around 35 local youth projects have been supported through the programme.
City Bridge has also supported us to develop a Family panel, led by parents and carers in the borough, and to build on our work with older people in the borough – bringing them into decision-making through the Golden Grant Makers panel.