The last round of the Tampon Tax Fund, amounting to £11.25m, has been awarded to charities, the government announced today.
Fourteen charities in total will receive a share of the £11.25m funding from the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS), which allocates the funds from a 5% VAT on sanitary products to organisations supporting disadvantaged women and girls.
Today's announcement did not state how much each charity had been awarded. Civil Society News has asked for this information.
The Tampon Tax Fund was set up by George Osborne in 2015, and has since distributed £90.25m in funding to women’s charities.
On 1 January 2021 the tax was abolished, making this £11.25m the last round of the funding to be awarded. Funding has been awarded to charities who are coordinating projects on topics such as pregnancy, sexual assault support and domestic violence.
Nadine Dorries, secretary of state for DCMS, said: “I’m delighted that these 14 organisations are receiving grants towards their exceptional projects helping disadvantaged women and girls.
“Over the last six years, the UK government's Tampon Tax Fund has supported charities right across the UK, and I’m extremely pleased that we were able to use VAT on period products for these important causes.”
Funding sexual assault support
Moray, Forth Valley and Edinburgh Rape Crisis Centre has been awarded funding for its partnership on The FEM Project.
The FEM Project aims to pilot a cross-region approach to increasing accessibility and inclusivity of rape crisis support for 75 women survivors of sexual violence with learning difficulties and/or from BME communities. The organisations are looking to mainstream its core delivery service with the funding.
Edinburgh Rape Crisis Centre provided this statement on behalf of the FEM partnership: “This partnership pilot project between Moray, Forth Valley and Edinburgh Rape Crisis Centres provides us with a unique opportunity to collaborate together to reduce the barriers that sexual violence survivors from some marginalised communities face in using rape crisis services.
“Our hope is that the learning from this pilot will help us in our work to be inclusive of all survivors of sexual violence and play our part in eliminating systemic discrimination and inequality.”
Administering technological advances
South West Grid for Learning, an online safety charity, has received funding for its Minerva project. The Minerva project will create a UK wide artificial intelligence tool for women suffering online abuse, including intimate image abuse. It will aim to use linking patterns to alert women of danger and empower them to report crimes, have intimate images removed and receive support.
CEO of South West Grid for Learning Ian Daniells said: “The support from the Tampon Tax Fund helps in our mission to ensure that ‘everyone benefits from technology free from harm’. SWGfL enjoys global acclaim in online safety and we want to thank DCMS for acknowledging our expertise and recognising our proposal as innovative and advanced. At a time when we see incidents of harassment and abuse of women online rising, we look forward to building on our existing knowledge to research, test and progress our ability to better protect women from harm online.”
The other charities receiving funding are:
- The Big Give Trust’s Women and Girls Match Fund
- Tommy’s Equality in miscarriage and pregnancy care
- Women in Sport’s Big Sister
- St Giles Trust’s Women Rising, Enabling Neighbourhoods
- The Central British Fund for World Jewish Relief’s STEP forward
- National Literacy Trust’s Game Changers: Trailblazing Women
- Best Beginnings and White Ribbon Alliance UK’s Safer Beginners
- Imkaan’s Margin to Centre
- Trevi South West Women’s Spark Project
- AVA (Against Violence and Abuse)’s In Safe Hands
- Welsh Women’s Aid’s Sector Strength Cymru
- Training for Women Network’s The Improve Project