29 April 2020
There is a long tradition of charitable giving woven into the fabric of the Merchant Taylors’ Company. From building London's first Almshouses to engaging passionately in education the Company's members have long committed themselves to varied philanthropic work.
To continue this legacy, the Court have agreed to simplify our charity structure and establish the Merchant Taylors’ Foundation. This is a single charity that makes grants to charities and organisations tackling disadvantage and which will change people’s lives for the better.
Nevertheless, today we find ourselves in a new landscape. Launching the Merchant Taylors' Foundation had envisaged a slower launch profile, perhaps a word in the Master’s July Livery Dinner speech and a note in No. 30 before take-off. But, given the unprecedented crisis that coronavirus has given us, we have accelerated our work to introduce the Foundation now.
The Company has a proud and long history of helping others, particularly in times of national crisis. This is certainly one of those times when we must stand up and match the generosity of past generations with our actions today.
We launch our Merchant Taylors' Foundation and with it our Coronavirus Appeal. The Appeal will support causes helping those impacted most by the health and economic crisis from COVID-19. To begin some of those causes are ones dedicated to getting food parcels to the most vulnerable in Lewisham, who are engaged in helping women and children fleeing abuse and schools which urgently need funding as they provide food and further support for staff, students, their families and their community.
We remain very proud of our Merchant Taylor history, as we are certain future generations of the Company will be of the Merchant Taylors today.