In April 2020, The Childhood Trust launched our first ever Champions for Children match-funding campaign, repurposing our annual Summer Give campaign to provide longer-unrestricted funds to charities working vulnerable children and young people across London through the Coronavirus pandemic. Please scroll down to the bottom of this page for more information about this campaign.

We recognise that Coronavirus is still playing a significant role in our lives, the lives of our charity partners, and the lives of vulnerable children and young people across London, and we want our work to reflect the consequent ongoing needs.

With this in mind, we will be running the Champions for Children campaign once again in 2021, to continue to provide unrestricted funds for charities ensuring they are able to continue to provide much-needed support to disadvantaged children and young people across London.

Applications for the Champions for Children campaign will be open 1st February - 5th March 2021

How does the Campaign Work?

The Childhood Trust campaigns are run in partnership with The Big Give.

Funds raised during Campaign Week are MATCHED from two different pots: pledge donors and Childhood Trust funds.

Pledge donors can be anyone from your network (individuals or organisations such as your corporate partners or trusts/foundations). As part of the application process, you will need to sign up pledge donors to support your campaign.

Donations during the campaign will first be matched by your pledge donor and then by The Childhood Trust.

Campaign Week will take place 8th -15th June.

What support does your charity receive through the campaign?

  • The Childhood Trust will run a workshop in the week of the week of the 4th May on how to run a successful fundraising campaign, including topics such as how to formulate your campaign messaging and how to use social media effectively
  • We are also always around to support you through this process for any one-to-one advice you might need, so please do let us know if you're struggling with anything or have a query!
  • We send regular communications to all our charity partners with funding opportunities, tools and resources, and relevant opportunities and services offered by our charity community and beyond
  • We can connections with other charities working with children and young people across London
  • We also offer our charity partners a raised profile and visibility through broader campaigns, events and other activities to raise awareness of the issues around child poverty and drive traffic to the charities
  • Please also refer to these additional resources

What does 'unrestricted funding' mean?

Charities seeking support from The Childhood Trust must be working with disadvantaged children and young people in London.

Funding is for costs that will be incurred within 12 months of the campaign, With this in mind, The Childhood Trust expects its funds to be spent by July 2022. 

This campaign is designed to support charities through the longer-term impacts of Coronavirus pandemic and ensure continued support for vulnerable children and young people. To this end, the funds raised through this campaign can be spend on whatever charities need to ensure this happens.

That said, there are some exceptions to what we will/will not fund. Please see our Grant-Making Policy for more information.

Unrestricted funds do still require donor reporting. The Childhood Trust will require charities participating in the Champions for Children to let us know how the funds have been spent at both 6- and 12- months after the campaign.


Champions for Children is open for applications from all charities that meet the following criteria:

  • Charities working with vulnerable children and young people based in London 
  • Charities with at least one set of accounts showing on the Charity Commission
  • Charities with over £25,000 income as per their last financial accounts 

Total funds to be raised in the campaign must be between £4,000 and £100,000. 

Key Dates

  • Applications open: 1st February 2021
  • Applications close: 5th March 
  • Deadline for pledges: 2nd April
  • Campaigns start: end of April
  • Campaign workshop: week beginning 4th May 
  • Campaign week: 8-15 June
  • Deadline for gathering pledges: 16 July

How to Apply?

If you wish to apply, the first stage is to register on Big Give website. The Big Give will then get in touch when applications open on 1st February with instructions on how to apply via their platform. If you have already registered on the Big Give site, you just need to sit back and wait for that instructions email. 

If you have any questions about the Big Give platform, please email the Big Give directly on‚Äč


Champions for Children 2020

The charities that participated in the Champions for Children campaign 2020 support children and young people across London from disadvantaged backgrounds, who have been negatively impacted by the lockdowns and the Coronavirus more broadly. 

The video below explains this in greater detail.

The charities are providing loving care, hot meals, fun activities, recreation, mentoring and many more brilliant activities and opportunities over the 12 months following June's campaign that will provide support to the children to alleviate this negative impact as much as possible.

The campaign also provided unrestricted funds for charities facing financial uncertainty , since many have seen a severe reduction in funding opportunities, with the elimination of fundraising events and the broader funding sector suffering under the uncertainty of the country's financial situation. Staff have been furloughed, capacity reduced, yet demand from children and young people has increased steeply. 

The Campaign

The charities collectively raised £3,655,349 to support an estimated 714,000 children across London.

The graphics below show charities' achievements during the campaign and the campaign's immediate impacts. 

Please see Our Impacts and Outputs page for the data we have received 6 months after the Champions for Children 2020 campaign.