John Thaw Foundation

Dame Sheila Hancock talks to us about the invaluable work of the Foundation set up by her late husband John Thaw,
shortly before he died.

The John Thaw Foundation is a small charity that I have the privilege of continuing for him, with the help of a dedicated Board of Trustees.
We are able to offer support to disadvantaged and underprivileged young people, by funding carefully selected projects, run by a wide range of established organisations, as well as smaller grass roots groups, across the UK. These projects all help young people to fulfil their potential and broaden their horizons and aspirations, despite the many challenges they face.
A supported project may be aimed at young people who need help to get their life back on track; for instance, young offenders, or those at risk of offending, or who are excluded from school, increasingly an issue now even for primary school pupils. It might help young carers, or those who leave care at 18, only to find themselves entirely unsupported. Sometimes it is work in the field of conflict resolution; whether it is related to gang culture or bullying. We also fund projects with children who have complex mental or physical disabilities. Most recently we have helped families that are struggling as a result of the pandemic. We like to offer opportunities to some children who will otherwise miss out on cultural enrichment, whether it be through lack of music provision in schools that cannot afford it, or for a trip or event that the school’s parent base simply couldn’t afford.

All these projects are aimed at developing young people’s sense of collaboration, creative thinking, and commitment; and will increase their confidence, skillset and social engagement.

The Foundation tries to give to smaller projects, where we can see the money will make a real difference. We are vigilant in our monitoring of outcomes, and wherever possible we ensure that we, or one of our committed volunteers, attend a performance, or presentation, or work in practice, so we can monitor the efficacy of the project in person.

If you would like more information on the range of projects we support, or to find out how you might offer support too, please email the administrator Every donation makes a difference and is hugely appreciated by me, the devoted Trustees, and above all, by those we are able to help.

Dame Sheila Hancock