Burberry Foundation awards £3m to Oxfam to drive community cohesion in Tuscany
The Burberry Foundation has awarded a £3 million grant to Oxfam as it looks to support community cohesion and help struggling families in the Italian city of Florence.
The grant will build on work already underway in the country by Oxfam Italia.
The Florentine area is renowned for its garment and luxury leather goods production and has a strong tradition of creativity and craftsmanship. However, Burberry said the established industries have come under threat in recent years and the region is seeing increasing levels of poverty, youth unemployment and economic migration.
Leanne Wood, a trustee of The Burberry Foundation and chief people and corporate affairs officer at Burberry, said: “We are proud to be supporting Oxfam’s work in the region of Tuscany. Their investment in community centres and educational programmes are vital in helping the local communities, who play such a vital role in the luxury and fashion industries, come together and have the tools to build a bright and prosperous future.”
Part of the work will include working towards improving integration between the Italian and migrant communities in the Florentine area. Running until 2022, the programme will develop new and expand existing community centres, and establish a network of community facilitators.
Due to the high school dropout rate in the Florentine area, particularly among the Italian population, Oxfam will also use funds from the grant to launch in-school workshops and mentoring programmes to improve skills development, enhance employability and equip parents, teachers and educators to support young people who have difficulties at school.
Roberto Barbieri, executive director of Oxfam Italia, said: “Oxfam is extremely grateful to The Burberry Foundation for its considerable investment. The programme, developed with Oxfam’s expertise, will particularly focus on supporting younger people, whatever their background, to bring brighter, fairer, futures for everyone.”
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