The Fund

We Love MCR are here to improve lives in Manchester, and we responded immediately to help our communities in the Covid-19 Crisis.

We are a city that comes together to help each when things get tough. It is at the very heart of what it means to be Mancunian. Now more than ever we must support each other. We Love Manchester coordinated the Campaign to get money to the Manchester groups and charities responding to urgent community needs.

The Covid-19 pandemic presented grave challenges for our city. There are hundreds of charities and community groups across Manchester still taking action right now, to protect and support our most vulnerable neighbours. Our neighbours who are lonely, hungry, at risk or without a home need our help more than ever.

That’s where we had an opportunity to come together and help.

On Monday March 24th 2020, the day before the government announced the nationwide lockdown of all but essential services, we launched our COVID-19 Community Response Fund – this offers grants to community groups and charities that are supporting vulnerable people and communities on the front line right now.

We Love MCR kicked off the Fund by giving £175,000 to the Fund immediately.

The Hut Group, one of Manchester’s biggest businesses, also made an incredibly generous donation of £500,000 to our fund. This helped us to reach many more people facing challenges across our city.

And our huge thanks also go to the the Savannah Wisdom charitable foundation.  They gave £100,000 to our Fund, to address food poverty and to support vulnerable women and children through the Covid-19 crisis. 

Mustard Tree – Ancoats

Mustard Tree are a charity that deliver a range of activities to tackle poverty and prevent homelessness across Manchester.

Many of their service users are particularly high risk if they contract Coronavirus, and they support people most at risk from the economic impacts of the crisis e.g. people in insecure jobs and at risk of eviction.

During the Covid-19 crisis they are staying open, operating as key workers under the categories of food distribution and leading front-line services as per the latest Government guidance.

They have been awarded £3,000 going towards the direct costs of their Covid-19 relief activities such as food, cleaning materials and equipment.

Check their website:

Greater Manchester Law Centre – Levenshulme

GM Law Centre provide free face to face legal support to Manchester residents regarding social welfare law, specifically welfare benefits, housing and homelessness advice and employment law.

They have halted all face to face enquiries and are providing advice via telephone and email. They’re currently dealing with urgent referrals from both Manchester City Council & Booth Centre regarding action where landlords are rushing through evictions (as the new laws protecting tenants aren’t in effect) and also homelessness cases where people are struggling to be homed because the virus restrictions will not allow multiple occupation in emergency accommodation.

They successfully applied to We Love MCR for a grant to buy laptops and video-conferencing software, allowing them to continue as many appointments as possible, assisting highly vulnerable clients protecting these individuals, their staff and volunteers.

Check their website:


Established in 2008, Europia is a registered charity and community development organisation for EU nationals living and working across Greater Manchester. Europia offers services ranging from legal surgery, welfare advice, EUSS application support and Emergency Funds for the most vulnerable in our communities.

Since COVID-19, Manchester has seen a sharp increase in unemployment. As a result, Europia decided to roll out their COVID-19 Emergency Fund for EU citizens who are struggling financially as a result of the pandemic. Europia has been distributing small grants of £30-60 to individuals and families in need throughout Greater Manchester in part funded by We Love MCR Charity.

COVID-19 has meant Europia’s services must now be delivered remotely. With funding from We Love Manchester, Europia was able to purchase Zoom licenses. As well as being integral to Europia’s internal and external communications, Europia has also used Zoom to deliver virtual community workshops on managing stress during COVID-19.

Check their website:

Talk, Listen, Change Charity

Talk, Listen, Change (@TLC_charity) is an organisation providing face to face services – counselling, therapy, domestic abuse services and community projects including volunteering services.

Since these services can no longer take place in person due to government advice following Covid-19, TLC have decided to adapt all of these to be carried out over the phone and by video call, rather than suspend their vital activities.


The £1,000 grant awarded to TLC will allow the organisation to continue to provide services for vulnerable Manchester residents, which will become ever more crucial as the weeks turn into months. The Covid-19 crisis could create a higher need for personal and relationships counselling, and may see a spike in instances of domestic abuse.

The Covid-19 Community Response Fund will help to cover the cost of the delivery of counselling sessions under the increased demand caused by the crisis, ensuring that the organisation can continue to run and respond to these urgent situations, even where service users cannot afford to pay for sessions due to loss of pay or unemployment caused by the virus.

LGBT Foundation – City Centre

LGBT Foundation is a charity which supports LGBT people through vital services, including talking therapies, domestic violence support, sexual health and HIV testing, support and social groups, trans advocacy, and substance misuse support.

They’ve temporarily shifted to become a remote service due to the Covid-19 crisis, working to ensure that LGBT people can still access the support they need during this period.

They looked for funding to develop a telephone and practical support offer for those most in need – people over 70, those with underlying health conditions, and those living in domestic abuse situations.

Recently, they took their first remote helpline call from home. They spoke to Carrie*, who, as an LGBT person with a learning disability, was terrified to leave their home due to the coronavirus to go out and get much needed food and supplies, and risked starving to death. LGBT Foundation volunteers were able to connect them with a community food delivery service with a network of volunteers and make sure they can access the supplies they need.

Learn more about the good work they do at

(*name changed)

Caritas, Lalley Centre – Collyhurst

The Lalley Centre is an organisation based in a North Manchester primary school, who assist the community with a range of services, including advice surgeries, wellbeing sessions & a weekly foodbank market. They have now had to close the centre and stop these services to adhere to the Government guidelines.

Now they are receiving more referrals for food and personal health products by telephone. They’ve adapted as per the guidelines and made the service appointment only. People come to the external door where they can collect a ready-made food parcel and essentials at the allotted time.

They looked for funding to support their effort in making deliveries to the community and particularly the over 70s & those with underlying health conditions, those destitute or with low/no pay. They’re doing this by joining forces with volunteer drivers and community groups to make this effective in as wide an area as possible, with our funds going towards fuel costs and subsidising donation packages.

Read more about their services at:

Olive Pathway – Wythenshawe

Olive Pathway provide specialist services and raise awareness on Domestic Violence (DV) and abuse amongst Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) communities in Manchester.

Normally, women can make contact and visit the service for a one to one support, information and group sessions. However under government guidelines this now isn’t possible.

Their Outreach Support service needs to continue, to enable them to support women who may be highly likely to be subjected to abuse in this “lockdown” period, through telephone / video call consultation and specialist support & intend to continue providing physical support to women urgently needing to flee domestic violence.

We’re funding for 4 outreach workers, tech support & emergency taxi funds to keep this support alive.

Visit their website at:

Homestart Manchester – City Wide