The Christmas Challenge is one of the two match-funding campaigns that The Childhood Trust runs each year. The Childhood Trust partners with The Big Give as one of the ‘champion funders’ for the Christmas Challenge. The Childhood Trust’s funds are used along with participating charities major donors’ funds to double all donations made during the campaign week.
This year, the campaign begins on Tuesday the 30th of November, which is ‘Giving Tuesday’, and the campaign will finish on Monday the 7th of December.
As The Childhood Trust is London’s child poverty charity, all charities supported by the Trust are raising money for projects that will benefit children and young people who live in the capital. This year, The Childhood Trust is supporting 98 projects across London. These projects cover a range of areas, including cultural and educational projects, sports and activities, food banks, mental health support, and human rights and advocacy work.
The Childhood Trust uses match-funding campaigns to fund the delivery of vitally needed poverty alleviation for children and young people living across London. However, in the aftermath of the pandemic, our Winter report reveals just how much of a difference this year’s Christmas Challenge will make to nearly 100,000 children.
Our report, ‘Cold, Hungry, Stressed’, was completed through surveys and interviews with families benefiting from 31 of the charity projects we are supporting in this year’s Christmas Challenge and the staff from the charities themselves. The research focuses on the effects that the current economic climate (Universal Credit uplift cuts, fuel poverty and food price inflation) is having on children living in poverty.
Regarding the effects of the Universal Credit cuts, our research found that 53% of the children supported by the charities in the report will be negatively affected by the cuts as it will reduce their household income. Meanwhile, 43% of respondents said that their main concern for Winter 2021/2022 was the rising cost of living, which has only worsened due to these cuts.
The report also found that 67% of the children represented by charities in the report were affected by food poverty in October 2021, and 19 out of 31 charities reported an increase in the number of beneficiaries accessing their services due to food poverty.
Furthermore, 38% of the children represented by the 31 charities are estimated to experience fuel poverty during the Christmas holidays due to increasing energy costs. Only 23% of charities interviewed thought that the ‘Winter Hardship Fund’ would alleviate the impact of poverty on their beneficiaries.
Our latest report shows how important this year’s Christmas Challenge will be to ensure that children and young people across London receive the support that they deserve over the Christmas holidays and beyond. If you would like to help, please follow this link to our Christmas Challenge web page where you can donate to any of the 98 projects that we are supporting this Christmas.
Lucy Acheson, Project Coordinator
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