Two partnership initiatives between the Evening Standard and the London Community Foundation were recognised at the Society of Editors Press Awards last month.
Food for London Now, which raised £10m to help thousands of families struggling with food poverty during the pandemic, won Campaign of the Year, while The Excluded was named runner-up for The Cudlipp Award.
On March 27, 2020 — a mere three days after lockdown measures were announced — the Evening Standard, in partnership with The Independent, launched an appeal to fund the delivery of surplus fresh produce to vulnerable Londoners unable to afford food or leave their homes due to COVID-19.
“It is a real testament to the team at the London Community Foundation that we could support this Evening Standard campaign alongside our own appeal and quickly transition to virtual working,” said Kate Markey, CEO of London Community Foundation.
The initial goal was to raise £3m, but as the pandemic dragged on it became clear that more funds would be needed. The Evening Standard put out unique stories each day to appeal to readers, businesses, and philanthropists. By the end of 2020, the campaign had raised £10m — more money than any other campaign in the title’s 193-year history.
With these funds, the campaign partner, The Felix Project, the largest re-distributor of food in London, quadrupled its food deliveries to 40 tonnes a week and distributed 20 million meals across London.
The Press Awards judges praised the campaign, calling it “truly amazing”.
“The titles came up with an effective project to address a shocking problem at a local and national scale.”
To ensure a lasting legacy, The Evening Standard secured another £1m through the London Dispossessed Fund to build and open the city’s biggest social kitchen. The kitchen, which opened last month, will be run by The Felix Project and will cook and distribute up to 1.5 million meals a year to hungry school children and vulnerable families.
The Excluded Initiative was also recognised at the Press Awards. The pilot programme, which supports inclusion in London’s secondary schools, was named runner-up for The Cudlipp Award.
One of the most prestigious awards on offer, The Cudlipp Award recognises excellence in popular journalism.
Launched following campaigns editor David Cohen’s investigation into the rising numbers of permanently excluded pupils, The Excluded provides funding to schools to provide intensive support for distressed children by setting up on-site inclusion units.
“I regard The Excluded — both the idea, the concept and what we are doing in our pilot as among the best and most pioneering work we have done on the Standard.”David Cohen, campaigns editor Evening Standard
The campaign secured £1.2m in funding and offered grants of £150,000 to eight schools over three years.
The Press Award judges commended Cohen for his investigation, which revealed that the true rate of exclusion was double what the government had announced and called the initiative “a great step forward for society”.
We at LCF are proud of the role we played in both campaigns and would like to thank the Evening Standard for their commitment to making London a stronger, more equitable community. We would also like to thank our campaign partners John Lyon’s Charity, The Moshal Scholarship Program, and The Felix Project for making these efforts possible.