The IPR Annual Review can be downloaded here.
As with charities throughout the country the year has been dominated by the pandemic. Before Covid and the first lockdown in March 2020 appointments were offered at our base in Holloway and another centre in south Islington but these had to quickly move to being by phone and online. Thanks to the exceptional work of the staff this huge change was achieved without any interruption to our services. IPR was successful in securing emergency grants from the London Community Response Fund to pay for IT, phones, training and software to quickly make the transition needed.
IPR has supported many residents to access emergency support. It is well recognised that the pandemic has disproportionately affected certain groups of residents including people with mental health issues, physical disabilities, carers and those from BAMER communities. There are now 26,500 households in receipt of Council Tax Support in Islington, indicative of the hardship caused by Covid and other factors. 246 additional households including 329 more children have also now been affected by the benefit cap as a result – an increase of 96%.
Another big development in the year has been the launch of the IPR Justice project. Full details of this exciting initiative are in this Review. The inspiration for IPR Justice is to use our extensive experience working in Islington to have a wider impact on policy and practice throughout the UK. This is an exciting ambition and one that we hope will translate into real benefits for many disabled people in the years ahead.
This Annual Review is a chance to acknowledge and thank all of those who have supported our work during 2020-2021. The London Borough of Islington has continued its commitment to our activities. IPR is also supported by a number of key grant making trusts who resource projects that are designed to help some of the most disadvantaged communities in the borough. Then there are the people who have raised money through special events such as the London Legal Walk – thank you all.
IPR has a fantastic team of staff, volunteers and Trustees who have worked tirelessly through one of the most challenging years in our 51-year history. As you will read in the following pages we are looking forward with renewed commitment and ambition to tackle poverty in Islington and beyond.