Registered Charity No. 266189
The Benevolent Fund was set up in 1973, succeeding an existing charitable fund. It was decided that its principal aim should be to support projects helping offenders and ex-offenders,
and those working with disadvantaged young people. Preference is given to pump priming new projects, especially those which are innovatory and can serve as a model elsewhere. In the mid-2000s it was decided that more substantial support should be given to fewer charities, and for longer periods.
Projects which fulfillfulfil the funding criteria are shortlisted, and visited by a member of the Livery. These assessment visits give Liverymen an opportunity to become closely involved in the charitable work of the Company, and the charities also benefit from the relationship.
Over the past 20 years In the first 35 years of its existence the fund has disbursed dispersed over £3.5 million supporting many worthwhile projects. Within prisons, the Company has supported charities which teach skills and boost prisoners' self esteem in a variety of ways: for example, using music; embroidery; counselling; letter writing; and the staffing of a restaurant. Some of these programmes continue to provide support to prisoners following their release.
Projects aimed at supporting ex-offenders which who have benefitted from Weavers’ funding have included the provision of hostel accommodation and practical support to assist rehabilitation; employment in horticulture; driving lessons in return for voluntary work; and training ex-offenders to run crime diversion schemes for teenagers.
Grants have also been awarded to a range of community-based projects for disadvantaged young people, including mentoring; anti-gang and drug abuse programmes; summer clubs in deprived areas; art and theatre workshops; and raising awareness of the problems of teenage pregnancy. For many a number of years the Company also sponsored the annual Prison Reform Trust lecture.
In addition to the principal funding criteria, a proportion approximately ten percent of the Benevolent Fund's income is used to respond to general charitable appeals. Priority is given to causes associated with the City of London, and to requests for donations to charities personally recommended by members
and Application Form
for prospective applicants are attached.