New partnership launched with Muslim Charities Forum

By Harriette Tillott

We are delighted to announce a new 3-month strategic partnership between The London Community Foundation (LCF) and Muslim Charities Forum (MCF).

MCF is an umbrella body for British Muslim charity sector who are helping charities to become a powerful network that work towards best practice, collaboration and responding to both international and national causes such as the COVID-19 pandemic. Over the next 3-months there will be different virtual events, application and funding support, roundtables, ongoing consultations, and other partnership activities to ensure grant making reflects the needs of all of London’s communities.

LCF has a long history of investing in London’s grassroots, including BAME-led charities and community groups. However, as a funder we are acutely aware of the power imbalance between funders and beneficiaries, and the inequality within the charity sector. It is vital that funders actively invest in infrastructure to support London’s diverse communities.

MCF’s recent report, COVID-19: The Neighbours Next Door, highlighted the vital role Muslim groups played in reaching the increased demand for support within communities during Covid-19. MCF conducted an extensive UK-wide mapping exercise across the country and found how the ‘Muslim charitable sector rose to the challenge with very minimal external support’ with only 16% of Muslim-led local charities accessing funding for their Covid-19 response. The report findings include: the need for collaboration; communication and awareness; overcoming systemic barriers to funding; and capacity support.

Our new strategic partnership with MCF will ensure learnings and insights are shared to improve our mutual impact. It is part of our commitment to providing a collective voice to funding and donor partners about the needs of London’s communities, particularly following the disproportionate impact of Covid-19 on vulnerable communities. Fadi Intani, CEO of Muslim Charities Forum said:

The health and economic effects of COVID-19 have, and will continue to, ravage through communities across the country. Among others, Muslim charities have stepped up and offered vital services for those in need. However, many of these charities are not running sustainably, leaving their community exposed as the crisis deepens. With our partnership with LCF, we hope to help charities receive the support they desperately need to continue serving their community across London.

Kate Markey, CEO of LCF:

MCF’s recent research shows how London’s Muslim organisations have been crucial to the Capital’s response to the pandemic despite the barriers to funding opportunities. This is an important strategic partnership for LCF and our mission to support the Capital’s communities. As a funder, we want to learn, be challenged, and create networks that both help other infrastructure organisations and grow mutual impact. We look forward to working with colleagues at MCF.

We encourage any Muslim-led organisations working in London to contact MCF directly to engage with their vital work. Please contact Anas Abu: anas@muslimcharitiesforum.org.uk