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Ford Fund investing £1m in Halewood and the local community

by Laura Johnston

Ford Motor Company Fund (Ford Fund), the philanthropic arm of Ford, working with their international grant-making partner GlobalGiving, has announced a £1 million investment to the end of 2025 to support Halewood and the wider Liverpool City Region.

This community investment underpins Ford’s £355 million commitment announced in 2022 to its Halewood plant, on Merseyside, which is transitioning to electric vehicle power unit production.

Ford Fund’s aim is to expand access to essential services including food provision for the underserved as well as to educate and prepare young people for the future world of work, bridging the gap between teaching and real-world industry experience.  Ford Fund and GlobalGiving will collaborate with key partners including Torrington Drive Community Association (TDCA) in Halewood, Liverpool Life Sciences UTC and Strawberry Field.

Mary Culler, President, Ford Motor Company Fund, said:

“As the global philanthropic arm of the company, we are delighted to work with our Ford teams and non-profit partners around the world to expand access to opportunities to help people and communities move forward.”

Lee Myers, Halewood Plant Manager, said:

“This year we are celebrating the 60th anniversary of Ford Halewood plant with our first power units for electric vehicles.  Ford and its employees are fully committed to our community, and it is wonderful to continue to expand and strengthen our outreach, working with key partners in Halewood and the wider region to help make a difference to local people’s lives.”

As part of this new community investment, GlobalGiving, Ford Fund’s international grant making partner, has provided initial grant funding to support the renovation of the New Hutte Neighbourhood Centre in Halewood, the base from which non-profit TDCA provides the vast majority of their essential and accessible support to Halewood residents. TDCA is a vibrant grassroots organisation devoted to enhancing the quality of life for residents and supporting and empowering them to voice and tackle concerns around poverty, social isolation and education.

The funding will also support TDCA’s food provision from an on-site café and food hub, social supermarket and mobile food service. The New Hutte Centre will join a network of global Ford community centres in Detroit USA; Pretoria, South Africa; Craiova, Romania and Bangkok, Thailand.

Cllr Graham Morgan, Leader of Knowsley Council, said:

“I’m delighted that New Hutte Neighbourhood Centre has secured funding from the Ford Fund. It provides invaluable support to our communities, tailored to local need, and has been a real lifeline to many. Further investment in the support and services they provide, as well as renovating their base, is really welcome news.”

Working in partnership with Liverpool Life Sciences UTC and the Studio School, funding will be directed to further develop project-based learning provision to be shared more widely across schools within the Northern Schools Trust and others in the wider Merseyside area.

The project-based learning approach gives learners a unique set of tools that help them to become “work ready” as they have gained a wide range of technical and transferable skills that are desired by an industry, but which are not traditionally taught as part of the standard national curriculum. Working with Ford Fund and the Ford Halewood plant, topics including lean manufacturing, data science, mobility and transportation will be piloted.

The Steps to Work programme at Strawberry Field empowers young adults aged 18 to 25 with learning difficulties, who are neurodivergent or have barriers to employment. The programme provides work readiness training, industry placements and volunteering options.