Funder commits extra £22m to support children & young people in London

Melanie May | 29 March 2021 | News

Two children working on an exercise book. Photo:

John Lyon’s Charity is committing an extra £22 million from its endowment to support children and young people over the next six years.

Driven by the impact of Covid-19, John Lyon’s Charity has ring-fenced the money in addition to its regular grant giving of around £12 million every year, having created a strategic plan to protect the children and young people’s sector in the long term, with the core focus on Home – School – Community.

The charity’s Home – School – Community strategy is designed to boost support to the sector by funding services that are crucial for a child’s life.


Over the next 12 months the charity will start the recovery process by beginning to invest the additional £22 million, looking to support organisations by initiating collaborations, replicating successful initiatives and rehabilitating organisations, using this funding as a lifeline for many who are at risk of permanent closure.

One of the first areas the charity will address is the fall in the offer of creative opportunities in schools by launching a new Cultural Capital Fund. This fund is designed to bring arts organisations and schools together to ensure there is a varied and accessible offer available to all children, regardless of background.  The charity will be inviting applications from both schools and arts institutions in London for projects that utilise the skills of the experienced and high-quality practitioners, and are planned and delivered as face-to-face experiences.

Its CEO, Dr Lynne Guyton, commented:

“While we have been part of the collaborative emergency response coordinated by London Funders since last March, granting over £1m in immediate grants, we have taken time to reflect and believe we now need to act strategically and definitively for the sector for the long-term. Our aim is to fund not just for the recovery but for the sustainability of the CYP sector.   Throughout the Covid-19 pandemic we have pledged to walk alongside our JLC Community and provide help and assistance in any way we can.  We strongly believe that we need to take positive action now to safeguard our previous investment in the sector for future generations.  Now is the proverbial rainy day”.

Since 1991, John Lyon’s Charity has awarded over £156 million in grants to a range of organisations that seek to promote the life-chances of children and young people through education.