UK aid match £6 million of public donations to Sport Relief to launch a new long-term partnership

17th March 2020

During Friday night’s Sport Relief night of entertainment on BBC One, it was announced that UK aid will double £6 million of public donations.

The money will launch a brand-new, long-term programme in partnership with Comic Relief, to support organisations in Ghana, Zambia and Malawi to strengthen their capacity so they can build on the life-changing work they are doing to support communities long into the future.

The aim is to shift greater power to locally-led organisations that are focused on driving positive change and finding local solutions. The £12million  raised will be spent across all of Comic Relief’s focus areas and ensure that people have a safe and secure place to call home, that children are given the best start in life, that women and girls’ rights are upheld and that people living with mental health conditions get the support that they need.  

Through this new programme, they will be given funding and support to invest in their own organisational development and in the areas that they think are most important for delivering their mission and meeting the priorities of the people and communities they intend to benefit. They will be supported by local experts – and one another – to enhance their skills and capabilities, as well as generate new types of funding locally.

The start of this new programme builds on over 10 years of successful partnership which has enabled generous donations from the great British public to Comic Relief to be used to directly support those most in need and continue to contribute to the Global Goals.  

So far, working in partnership with the British public, UK aid and Comic Relief have helped to improve the lives of more than 8.9 million people across 27 countries in the past decade.

Ruth Davison, Deputy Chief Executive at Comic Relief, said: 

“We believe that those closest to problems are best placed to address them. We are hugely excited about this new programme, which will see us work with organisations that have the local knowledge, trust and talent needed to tackle poverty and injustice. These are organisations that aren’t always able to access the long-term, flexible funding they need to plan for the future and to sustain their vital work. 

“Thanks to UK aid matching £6 million of public donations this Sport Relief, we are able to build on our amazing 10 year partnership, and to continue to make a real difference to people’s lives in Ghana, Zambia and Malawi.”

International Development Secretary Anne-Marie Trevelyan said:

“The UK is stepping up to support communities in Ghana, Zambia and Malawi to help children develop in their early years, the most important part of a child’s life. This work is crucial to their long term health and education, helping them to ultimately fulfil their potential.

“UK aid will match every pound the generous British public donates to this Sport Relief cause up to £6million, meaning their generosity will go twice as far. By joining forces, we are helping communities in ways that will benefit generations to come.”

You might remember that this time last year, UK aid matched £2 million of public donations to our Red Nose Day Campaign to support projects working with people with mental health conditions in Kenya, to make sure they have access to the support they need and are empowered to live free from stigma and discrimination.  We have selected a group of fantastic Kenyan organisations and look forward to sharing more about the work they are delivering with your generous support over the year ahead.