CHILDREN growing up in poverty are getting a helping hand from SAFC’s Foundation of Light charity.
Young people aged 10 and under from 160 Sunderland families living in disadvantaged neighbourhoods will benefit from a £890,000 Big Lottery grant.
During the next four years, the Foundation will help families in Southwick, Concord, Hendon, Peat Carr, Moorsley and Pennywell.
Youngsters living with domestic violence, dire financial circumstances or seriously-ill family members will be the priority.
Families will also be linked up with a community “friend” to help track and maintain progress.
Ken Teears, strategic development director at the Foundation of Light, said: “The Neighbourhood Alliance programme will make a significant impact on the lives of children and families in need across the city of Sunderland.
“On behalf of the Foundation of Light, we’d like to thank the Big Lottery Fund for their support which will assist in helping those living in some of the most deprived wards in the country.”
Peter Ainsworth, chairman of the Big Lottery Fund, said: “The focus is firmly on the children.
“They don’t choose the families or circumstances they are born into, but adult issues such as unemployment, domestic violence, housing or health issues can have a devastating effect on children’s lives and their life chances.
“This programme is about innovation and finding successful, cost effective ways of helping those children and their families.
“The Foundation of Light has already demonstrated this ideal through the various programmes they offer throughout the North East, and we are delighted to be helping extend its impact and reach through the Neighbourhood Alliance project.”
The Foundation of Light – formerly known as SAFC Foundation – works with more than 40,000 people every year.