Federation of London Solidarity Funds
Give what you can, take what you need
We are community funds operating independently but cooperatively in London.
Our funds aim to redistribute wealth within our local neighbourhoods.
Click on the name of the fund you would like to learn more about.
What is the SE24 Solidarity Fund?
The Herne Hill Solidarity Fund is a community money pot for neighbours who are struggling to buy essentials. There are no conditions to apply for the fund, other than being a resident of SE24. When you put a request in, you can let us know briefly why you have requested funds and we will then approve your request. All you need is proof of address (this doesn’t need to be anything formal, just something that shows you live in SE24) and a bank account so that we know you are within the local area. If you don’t have these, contact us and we will try to help.
We know that situations change and we respect the autonomy of those who receive the money to spend it however they need. Therefore, we don’t ask for receipts or proof of how money has been spent. You can apply once a month and our fund is given out in chunks of £50.
All contributions and expenses are published on the Open Collective website, so there is full transparency of the money which comes in and out of the fund. It is possible to remain anonymous as either a backer of the fund (by selecting ‘incognito’) or as a recipient (by using your initials).
We hope that the fund becomes something residents of SE24 will be able to take ownership of, used by and belonging to our community.
Where does the money come from?
We encourage residents of SE24 to donate to our fund to support their local community, and we appreciate donations from anyone who supports our aims. You can donate as much or as little as you like, but we recommend considering it as a chunk of your total income. For example, an hours’ or even a days’ wages are a good place to start.
We know that donating to our fund is a little different to donating to a charity, so we ask those who contribute to trust that in helping each other out we strengthen our community as a whole.
We hope contributors will create an ongoing relationship and see their contribution as a way of showing their love for our unique neighbourhood. Hence, why we refer to contributors as ‘backers’ rather than just donors!
How do I Apply for Herne Hill Solidarity Fund?
Watch a how to video below!
If you need more help contact email@example.com
or phone 07871 383108
So, here we are. If you’re reading this then you already know the scale of the problem facing us, with an imbalance of power in the hands of those who have a heck of a lot, and those without who need that money more than most. To top it all of COVID-19, which in many ways has laid bare the scale of this inequality; one option to this is to say, well, that sucks, but what can we do about it? So we say - let’s get stuck in, build infrastructure whilst the old world shakes around us.
We in East Dulwich/Goose Green, a small village-like area which undoubtedly masks these existing inequalities with its beautiful terraces of mid-Victorian housing, decided that the time was right to set up some sort of fund, on a small postcode scale, but with the aim of building capacity and figuring out constantly how best to support the people who needed it most. In many ways, this project is unfinished. This fund is just the beginning.
As always, we act in solidarity with anyone and everyone who is and has historically suffered under capitalism and especially so in this conjuncture, of virus and neoliberalism/austerity.
The Goose Green Solidarity fund provides assistance to SE22 residents who are struggling financially as a result of COVID-19. This fund can be used for anything, from buying groceries to paying for prescriptions. There is neither judgement nor is there an obligation to pay back the money. This is run in direct accordance with principles of mutual aid - “from each according to their ability, to each according to their need”.
You can apply for funds of up to £50 per application. If your application is approved, you will not be able to apply again for another month, to ensure that we can approve expenses for as many people as possible.
You must upload proof of address, confirming that you live within Goose Green Ward. We do not ask you to upload an invoice, bill or receipt, but ask that you use the fund in good faith. If you wish to remain anonymous, please just upload the initials of your name when asked for your full name. The fund releases money frequently throughout the week, but not immediately. Please take this into account when you apply for funds, as they may not be released immediately.
Neighbours supporting neighbours in SE15 through the COVID crisis and beyond. Give what you can, take what you need.
The SE15 Community Fund offers financial support to people located in the SE15 postcode who may be struggling due to the COVID-19 pandemic or other circumstances. This fund can be used for any purpose. There is no judgement, nor is there any obligation to pay back the money. We are a group of SE15 based neighbours who believe in helping our neighbours when they are in need - on the basis of solidarity, not charity. This fund is available to any current resident of the SE15 postcode, on provision of proof of address. Neighbours can apply for up to £50, and each neighbour can receive cash up to once per month - this limit is intended to ensure that as many people as possible get the help they need. We are always looking to increase the size and/or frequency of grants, but can only do so in line with the donations we receive.
Want to contribute? Anything that you are able to give to support the fund, no matter how small, is greatly appreciated. As a steer, some people might give the equivalent of one days’ wages, for a lump sum donation. EVEN better would be a monthly or even weekly recurring contribution which will help provide more consistent support to fellow neighbours and avoid a situation where the pot is empty when someone needs it. And if you want to give in a different way - e.g. helping us fundraise, delivering leaflets or helping us reach more of the community, we would also love to hear from you.
Please do not hesitate to message or get in touch at firstname.lastname@example.org or via your local mutual aid group if you need any assistance or have a question.
Want to start your own solidarity fund? ☺
Read the guide below put together by Goose Green for some thoughts!
We want every neighbourhood to have a solidarity fund, get in contact to chat and we can help you set up!
Newham Solidarity Fund is a community-led project that helps neighbours to support each other. Built on the principles of mutual aid, solidarity and good will, the fund awards small grants of up to £50 per month to Newham residents.
We are a group of neighbours who met through Covid Mutual Aid groups in Newham and decided to set up a fund to help people in their community beyond the current crisis.
Applicants can use the fund to pay utility bills, put food on the table, cover rent or buy anything else they need. We believe everyone is owed the dignity to make their own choices without oversight.
Newham Solidarity Fund's aim is to show solidarity, not charity, to any neighbours who need help. We hope Newham residents will give what you can, and take what you need.
Give these a read:
Solidarity funds: When donating is much more than charity / Bright Green
Don’t Despair, Organise! / Freedom News
Activist Cafe: How and why to start a solidarity fund / Common House
£10K Fundraiser Set Up To Help Five Solidarity Funds This Winter / Southwark News
You can find individual fund's contact details on their pages.
To contact all of us email:
£10,642 raised in 28 days!
Our Winter 2020 Crowdfunder has closed. Thank you to all 189 of you who donated!
Why are we Crowdfunding?
We are raising money to redistribute wealth to the most vulnerable in our communities, with mutual aid and solidarity funds set up to support people through lockdown #2 and the crisis of inequality.
Who we are:
We are a coalition of community and solidarity funds that work together to address wealth imbalance in our local areas.
We are made up of: Goose Green Solidarity Fund, Herne Hill Solidarity Fund, Newham Solidarity Fund, SE15 Community Fund, SE16 Community Fund and Brent Solidarity Fund.
We are 100% volunteer run and put the needs of our neighbours at the centre of everything we do.
Together we've raised over £24,000 in the past six months and distributed it directly to residents in all of these different postcodes.
'Life's not fair' is what you're told as a child, yet we are here to make life a little less unfair in London. We are crowdfunding money to redistribute wealth to those who need it most in our communities this winter.
How we work:
We rely on monthly and one-time donations from individuals and small businesses with secure finances in our postcodes. Anyone in our communities can then draw from this fund in a financial emergency, based on the principles of trust, solidarity and respect.
The solidarity funds in our network grew from a desire to create something different. There are no barriers to accessing our help and this means we can respond quickly to emergency situations, even if someone has no fixed address, is undocumented or ineligible for government funds -- common barriers to accessing services.
We have helped many people in our communities so far this year, but currently the money we receive isn't enough to cover the dozens of requests we receive each month.
What we are crowdfunding for:
Another lockdown means increased pressure on the most vulnerable in our community, and when combined with the rising heating bills that winter brings, we predict the need for the various funds will be greater than ever.
That’s why we’ve decided to join together with a target of raising £10k to be shared between the funds and help as many people as possible.
We all know how hard it can be to make ends meet in London – 18% of jobs pay less than the London Living Wage – and Coronavirus is making inequality even worse. People can’t afford to wait when their electricity has been shut off or they have no food in the fridge.
By backing this cause you will ensure that dozens of people will be able to support themselves over these coming months by buying food, heating, clothes for children, or other necessities needed to live safely.
“The Goose Green Solidarity Fund shouldn't need to exist. The fact that it does, and it has helped many local people such as myself and family can equally be seen as a triumph of social action and a damning failure by both local and central government. The fund has for many, including myself, meant the difference between being able to eat two meals a day, rather than one or none.”
“My family has been able to eat and have a warm flat [because of the SE15 Community Fund]”
Many people in Brent are in hardship as a result of COVID-19. This crisis has worsened inequality and economic insecurity across London. We know its effects will be felt for a long time to come.
In response, people from mutual aid groups across the borough have organised the Brent Solidarity Fund. Its purpose is to give money to anyone in Brent who is struggling financially. The fund is run with respect and trust, in accordance with principles of mutual aid. Money from the fund can be used for anything and there is no obligation to pay it back.
How does it work?
Anyone in Brent who is in need of money can apply. You don’t need to have a bank account to get money from the fund. At the moment we offer up to £50 per person each month, but that might change in future, depending on how much money we raise each month. You can apply once per month, for as long as we have enough money in the fund.
How do I apply?
If you or someone you know would like to apply for money from the fund, just contact your nearest mutual aid group and they will help. You can find a list of Brent mutual aid groups who are currently able to refer people here . Don’t worry if your area isn’t listed, just contact your closest one.
How do I actually get the money?
Your local mutual aid group will send your basic details to us (name or alias, year of birth and postcode) and give you instructions on how to claim through the Open Collective website. We match the information we receive from the mutual aid group to claims on the website. The money will then be transferred directly into your bank account. The fund releases money several times a week, but not immediately.
If you need the money in cash, your local group will arrange for that to happen in a way that’s safe. They can also help you use the platform if you don’t have internet access.
What is the SE16 Community Fund ?
The SE16 Community Fund offers financial help to people located in the SE16 postcode, who may be struggling due to the COVID-19 pandemic or other circumstances. This fund can be used for any purpose. There is no judgement, nor is there any obligation to pay back the money. We are a group of SE16 based neighbours who believe in helping our community when they are in need - on the basis of solidarity, not charity.
Am I eligible to receive help from the fund ?
This fund is available to any current resident of the SE16 postcode. You must upload proof of address, confirming that you live within the SE16 postcode. We do not ask you to upload an invoice, bill or receipt from what the grant is spent on, but ask that you use it in good faith. We do not require any more personal details - feel free to just upload the initials of your name when making an Open Collective personal profile in order to remain anonymous. For those with no fixed address, please get in contact at email@example.com as we will direct you to available services if we cannot help.
How do I receive money from the fund?
Please look at our User Guide for full instructions on how to claim from the fund via Open Collective. You can access this here.
SE16 residents can apply for up to £50 at a time. Take only what you need, so that others can also get help. Each resident can receive funds once per month - this limit is intended to ensure that as many people as possible get the help they need. We are always looking to increase the size and frequency of grants, but can only do so in line with the donations we receive.
Who organises the fund and how are decisions made ?
Please look at our User Guide for full instructions on how to claim from the fund via Open Collective. You can access this here.
The current administrators of the fund are four SE16 residents, 3 of whom met at secondary school and grew up in the local area. They later met the 4th member when they moved into SE16. The fund is run in accordance with our constitution, which can be read by clicking here.
We are in touch with local community groups to increase awareness of the fund's existence, so that those that need to are able to access it. We want everyone to be able to access the fund and are keen to work with others regarding emerging issues. If you have any feedback about your experience, or can help us understand the needs and experiences of users, please get in touch at firstname.lastname@example.org