Compassionate Communities £450,000 funding programme launched

Working in partnership with Imperial Health Charity, the Trust is pioneering a new funding programme – Compassionate Communities - to support some of the most vulnerable people impacted by Covid-19 in North West London. Programme manager Hannah Fontana explains how this new, collaborative project will help to address some of the complex knock-on effects of the pandemic in our local communities.

Earlier this year we were delighted to hear that Imperial Health Charity has committed to support a new funding programme, Compassionate Communities, which will help some of our most vulnerable communities across North West London. We aim to deliver community-designed and led pilots which will help members of our community who were most affected by the direct and indirect effects of Covid-19. We aim to address complex and important issues such as obesity, which has been shown to exacerbate the impact of Covid-19, and food poverty, a challenge faced by more and more people as the economic impact of the pandemic is realised. Imperial Health Charity has made a substantial commitment of £450,000 to fund the programme. The first set of grants will be awarded to a series of projects in early 2021.

Over the next couple of months, we are going to be working with partners across the patch to identify community leaders and organisations that would like to work with us to shape this innovative approach to grant funding. Our ambition is that funding reaches those most in need. To do this, we want to connect with people who are leading fantastic initiatives across the area and really understand what our local populations need and could benefit from.

We will develop a community panel made up of individuals and organisations from across North West London who will help co-design and shape this grant funding initiative. We will work together to consider:

  • Which members of our community could benefit most from this support?
  • How can we effectively engage with our community and identify potential applicants?
  • How can we best support applicants with their bids and the delivery of their projects?
  • How should we capture the impact of this work?

We want to maximise the impact of this funding by supporting organisations that have strong relationships with our local communities and by working closely with our partners across the area. We want to make sure the funding is accessible and directed towards initiatives that don’t always have an opportunity to grow or scale up.

We are very excited about this upcoming work and are working hard to speak to and hear from as many people as possible who are interested in this programme. We are particularly interested in:

  • Any insight in terms of relevant experiences, data and reports relating to our areas of focus – obesity, food poverty and the impact of Covid-19.
  • Identifying any community groups, networks or forums which you think we should be engaging with, and also those who might want to bid for this grant.
  • Reaching as many networks across NWL so that we can make sure we hear from as wide an audience as possible.

If anyone would like to learn more, share insights or get in touch, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with Hannah Fontana (Strategy, research and innovation programme manager – or Toby Hyde (Deputy director of transformation –

Imperial Health Charity:

For more information about Imperial Health Charity’s grants programme, please visit the charity’s website. As part of the charity’s 2019 – 2022 strategy we aim to ‘Enable innovation in health and care within the Trust and the wider health system’ by building partnerships with key health and third sector organisations to expand the impact our work can have.

Compassionate Communities underpins this objective and by 2022 Imperial Health Charity will have enhanced its role as a key enabler of improvement and transformation in health and care for London, whilst influencing development nationally.