Mayor of London Announces £750,000

The ‘Community Spaces at Risk’ fund will help protect grassroots cultural centres, social clubs, youth, education and other spaces that are locally-rooted and critical for supporting vulnerable groups during the pandemic. Many of these community hubs deliver a range of activities to tackle isolation, support mental health and resilience and provide essential local services, but they are under financial pressure when they are needed most.   

This new fund will provide one-to-one specialist advice, direct support and grants to help organisations protect these spaces. It will be particularly targeted at those most affected by the impact of covid-19, including Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic communities, LGBTQ+ communities, Deaf and disabled people, and women’s-led groups.

It will be delivered through a new partnership between the Mayor’s Culture at Risk Office and Locality, a national charity specialising in supporting community organisations. The Mayor’s Culture at Risk office was set up in 2016 to protect cultural and creative spaces across the capital. Since the start of the pandemic, the Culture at Risk Office has been expanded and has helped provide urgent support to more than 660 cases. It has helped organisations and individuals with lease negotiations, fundraising, lobbying decision-makers to save at-risk venues, as well as emergency grants. 

The fund will be part of the London Community Response, which is helping a diverse range of community and voluntary organisations deal with the impact of the pandemic. The capital’s already-stretched voluntary and community sectors have seen a significant rise in demand for their services this year, and the Mayor, who is a founding contributor to the London Community Response, has now provided nearly £10m in total.

How to Apply

The ‘Community Spaces at Risk’ support programme is aligned with the current and next wave of the London Community Response. Organisations will have two opportunities to apply for support: 

  • In the current wave: ‘Navigating Crisis’ open to 3 December 2020, for one-to-one support and grants up to £10,000.  
  • Applications will reopen early in the new year – exact dates to be announced shortly. 

All eligible organisations who have already applied to the current wave of the London Community Response will automatically be considered for the ‘Community Spaces at Risk’ support programme.  

Organisations will be contacted directly by the Culture at Risk Office on 7 December 2020 to confirm their registration and to request permission for their details to be shared with third parties as part of the application for the ‘Community Spaces at Risk’ programme. 

For more information about eligibility and what kind of space is suitable please click here