By Sue Turner, Quartet CEO
Hello how are you? I hope you and yours are keeping safe and well during this extraordinary time we’re sharing.
Over the last 12 weeks it’s been clearer than ever the vital role our small local causes play in reaching those most in need. I’ve been in the privileged position to see how many of you responded swiftly to ensure your services continued to reach those you support. The contribution so many across our area have made through volunteering has also been heart-warming.
I’ve seen amazing generosity as our supporters have helped raise over £1m for the Coronavirus Fund. We pledged at the start of the crisis that Quartet Community Foundation would keep making grants “no matter what” and I’m pleased to say that we’re working from home and delivering on that pledge every day. Already over £730k from the Response Fund has reached the small, local causes we serve.
As the crisis evolves so must our response
We know that this virus is not “a great leveller”; we know that BAME communities, older people, people with disabilities, people living in poverty – particularly women on low incomes – have been hardest hit by this crisis. The systemic inequalities we saw before the crisis have been magnified and, whilst the flowing tide of the eventual recovery will benefit some people, without concerted action it will push our disadvantaged communities further under water.
Our pledge to you is that Quartet Community Foundation will listen to you – our communities and grant applicants – and do more to target grants at changing long standing inequalities. Our Coronavirus Fund has had a special focus on supporting harder to reach groups and in the recovery phase we will do more to shift power to communities as well as straining every sinew to generate more funding to support you.
We know that hundreds of local charities, voluntary and community groups right now are in danger of closing forever. We will not have the funding to keep everything as it was before the crisis but if you will work with us, we believe that together we can reshape the social sector in the West of England.
We’ll soon be launching a recovery fund to help secure the future of our local causes. Keep an eye on our website for more details.