A better city for all: Our four points of focus will make London fit for the future

Charles Bowman
City Salute Takes Place For Armed Forces At St Paul's Cathedral
The aim is to help one million people thrive (Source: Getty)

Last Monday, alongside my fellow aldermen Peter Estlin and William Russell, I was delighted to host an audience of some 220 chief executives and senior leaders from across the City of London at the Mansion House.

Together, we launched a new groundbreaking multi-year strategy of the Lord Mayor’s Appeal: “A Better City for All”.

We have thoroughly researched the issues which this new programme will tackle in London by speaking with over 200 organisations in the Square Mile. The feedback was clear.

Read more: A manifesto for the City of London’s future

The City wants us to focus on four key areas: to build a City that is inclusive, healthy, skilled, and fair – with the overall aim of making the capital a better place to work and live. For the first time, three charities – Place2Be, OnSide Youth Zones. and Samaritans – will come together in a partnership to work with the Lord Mayor’s Appeal.

All funds raised over the next three years will go towards a pioneering new programme addressing some of London’s most pressing social issues, with the aim of helping one million people thrive.

Funding will enable Place2Be, a national children’s mental health charity, to help 180 schools in London to meet the needs of their most vulnerable children.

This will be done by equipping school leaders with the skills and knowledge to develop their school’s mental health strategy and to support their pupils’ emotional well-being, reaching 81,000 children.

Through the partnership, OnSide Youth Zones will introduce new “Youth Zones” in Barking and Dagenham, Barnet and Croydon, supporting the capital’s young people. OnSide Youth Zones will offer high quality mentoring, personal development and employability skills training to ensure young Londoners are equipped for the future, partnering with local voluntary organisations to provide a range of inspirational and developmental activities.

Finally, through the Appeal, Samaritans will develop a revolutionary online programme for everyone who lives in the City, and all those who work in UK financial and professional services.

It will encourage employees to take care of their mental health and to listen and be there for others – supporting people when they feel isolated and alone, saving lives.

We will continue to build on our three thought leadership programmes: Power of Diversity, This is Me (tackling the stigma of mental health), and City Giving Day, which recognises the philanthropy and volunteering that business and its employees.

We are breaking new ground with this multi-year programme. I am very excited with this new approach and I look forward to seeing the positive impact it and our new partnerships will make.

The Lord Mayor’s Appeal will raise much needed funds through our new Corporate Partners Programme as well as a series of fun filled events each year.

In the first of these, I will be dressing up as Father Christmas and taking part in Santa in the City, a Santa fun run around the Square Mile on 6 December – please join me in getting into the festive spirit!

Read more: City partnerships are proving how social mobility is good for business

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