Philanthropists Julia and Hans Rausing have announced grants of £5.25 million as part of their annual Christmas giving. This year, they are giving to charities helping individuals with the ongoing cost of living crisis, homelessness, as well as those living alone.
In total 49 charities will receive donations across the UK, including local charities in east Cheshire, Gloucestershire and London.
The Trussell Trust’s nationwide food bank crisis response campaign receives the largest grant of £3.5 million. Julia and Hans Rausing previously supported the Trussell Trust in 2022 as part of their emergency foodbank appeal.
The Trussell Trust has said that it is anticipating the toughest winter yet with food banks forecast to be used by 600,000 people between December and February, which will be the highest level of need ever recorded. Almost three million emergency food parcels were distributed between April 2022 and March 2023: a 37% increase on the previous year.
Other charities being supported include:
- Glass Door: The homelessness charity will use £400,000 over two years to fund the shortfall for its emergency winter accommodation in West London, offering a safe place to sleep and a hot evening meal and breakfast for up to 105 guests each night.
- Gloucestershire Community Foundation: £30,000 has been pledged to its ‘Poverty Hurts’ appeal, providing food, clothing and other essential items to the most deprived communities in Gloucestershire.
- Re-Engage: The national charity is running a ‘Christmas Call’ companion project, offering isolated older people a dedicated telephone befriending service throughout December to help tackle the loneliness that is felt at Christmas time.
This is the fifth year of Julia and Hans Rausing’s Christmas giving campaign. The £5.25 million donated is more than double last year’s total, which was previously the largest on record. The donations are part of a focus by the Rausings on supporting charities helping people through the ongoing cost of living crisis.
Julia and Hans Rausing said:
“Christmas is a time for giving, and it is clear from our conversations with charities across the UK that many people are going to find this year exceptionally difficult. The cost of living crisis over the past 12 months has left more people in need of support while charities have fewer resources to provide help.
“The charities we are supporting this year are all making a significant difference to those in need, bringing some seasonal cheer to people facing a challenging winter. We encourage others who have the means, to give generously to charities delivering excellent work across the UK this festive period.”
Emma Revie, CEO at the Trussell Trust, said:
“Food banks in our network are facing their most challenging winter yet, expecting to provide more than a million emergency food parcels over the next three months which equates to a parcel every 8 seconds. As we see more people experiencing hardship and needing to access a food bank, many for the first time, we’re extremely grateful to Julia and Hans Rausing for their generous support.
“This remarkable grant will help ensure that our network of food banks can continue to provide much-needed support in their communities, as we continue to work towards a future where everyone can afford the essentials.”