UK National Lottery to provide £600m to tackle COVID-19 impact

28th April 2020 11:41 am GMT

The UK National Lottery has agreed to repurpose £600m of funds to combat the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic in the UK.

Charities and organisations affected by the impact of the coronavirus outbreak in the UK are being given access to a comprehensive package of support of up to £600m of repurposed money from the National Lottery.

The funding will be distributed over the next few months to help projects in the UK most impacted by coronavirus, and which support some of the most vulnerable people in communities.

This includes good causes that combat loneliness and isolation, provide support for the elderly, or projects that support physical and mental health in the community, with the extensive funding packages spanning the arts, community and charity, heritage, education, environment and sports sectors.

“The National Lottery has always supported projects that help people and communities across the UK thrive,” said Dawn Austwick, chair of The National Lottery Forum. “And now, the funds available are switching focus to support communities, arts, heritage, sport, education and the environment to mitigate the unprecedented pressure they are coming under as the country rallies to overcome COVID-19.”

The funding support announced to date in the UK to help tackle the impact of the coronavirus includes up to £300m from the National Lottery Community Fund to groups best placed to support people and communities; a £50m emergency fund from the National Lottery Community Fund to address immediate pressures in the heritage sector; £157m for Sport England to support the sport and physical activity sector; and £144m for the Arts Council in England to support individuals and organisations across the cultural sector.

“Since the National Lottery began in 1994, its dedicated players have raised more than £40bn for good causes across the UK, making an enormous difference to people’s lives and the issues they care about,” said Oliver Dowden, Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport. “In these uncertain times, lottery funding takes on an even greater significance, as we come together to deliver a national effort. So I am delighted that the National Lottery is channelling its support to help those most in need across these sectors.

“This will help to support jobs and economic growth, allowing us to support vulnerable people who are relying on us, and continue to keep Britain active, educated and entertained both during and after this epidemic.”

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