The Didcot Powerhouse Fund – Fuelling Better Futures
Advanced Oxford members Milton Park, Harwell Campus, Evotec and Ipsen are among supporters of a new fund – The Didcot Powerhouse Fund. The theme of the fund for 2022 is ‘Supporting children, young people and families as we emerge from a pandemic’.
The Fund will attract donations from companies, grant bodies and philanthropists and its primary function is to use this to dispense grants to sustain organisations that are working on the ground in the Didcot community. This funding will help deliver more and better community services and in doing so, will help address inequalities that exist in the town, giving everyone access to what they need, from the cradle to the grave.
The largest town in South Oxfordshire, and growing, Didcot is a key part of the broader Oxfordshire Innovation Engine, driving the local economy and attracting leading science, R&D, technology, engineering, and innovation companies to the area. However, Didcot features in the top 20% of the Index of Multiple Deprivation in England, whilst adjoining, more affluent neighbourhoods feature in the bottom 20% of the index. 1 in 5 people have no educational qualification and 12% of children are living in poverty in Didcot. Additional financial and practical support is needed to support the community.
Lord Vaizey of Didcot is the new Patron of The Didcot Powerhouse Fund and at a recent Key Stakeholder Information event for the Fund, was delighted to announce that he has raised over £21,350 including Gift Aid, from running the recent London Marathon. This contributes to the headline fundraising total raised of over £100,789, derived from corporate sponsors, local businesses, and pledges, for the next 2 years.
Ed Vaizey said ‘We need more donors and to work as a collective force if we are to ensure the Fund can sustain the Didcot community into the future, to provide grant applicants with the money they need to deliver hope to many more people.’
Lord Vaizey of Didcot, Patron of The Didcot Powerhouse Fund, handing a cheque to David Pryor, Chair of Didcot First, for The Didcot Powerhouse Fund (proceeds from his London Marathon fundraiser) at The Key Stakeholder Information Event, hosted by MEPC Milton Park
The Fund will open for grant applications in Q1 2022, and A Grants Panel of people with local insight will ensure that grants go to organisations demonstrating partnership with others, a high level of local impact and with a minimum of 90% of beneficiaries living in the Didcot Garden Town Area of Influence. Businesses will benefit by being able to streamline their giving into a fund that demonstrates positive outcomes, in a highly transparent and accountable way.
Philip Campbell, Commercial Director MEPC Milton Park said ‘Having worked at Milton Park for over 15 years now, I have had the privilege of supporting many world-leading, innovative businesses and seeing the science sector go from strength to strength. Through my involvement with Didcot First, I have also seen social challenges that affect the area, which are often hidden by the amazing economic statistics. I believe it is important for all businesses, that the environment within which they operate thrives and The Didcot Powerhouse Fund will give businesses a real opportunity to come together to make a significant local impact.’
John Chaddock, CEO of Ipsen said ‘Ipsen is proud to be a Dynamo Donor at the launch of the Didcot Powerhouse Fund, providing vital support to confront deprivation within the Didcot Garden Town Area of Influence. Our company strategy recognises our impact on society as a key area of focus, and it is exciting to be able to work with the experienced and passionate Didcot Powerhouse Fund team to make a difference in the local community.’