Highgate charity clarifies links with Kids Company in wake of scandal

The founder of a Highgate charity which partnered with scandal-hit Kids Company has urged the media not to lose sight of the thousands of disadvantaged children who still need support.

Lindsey Wylie, of the Alexandra Wylie Tower Foundation (AWTF), released a statement on Tuesday to address allegations of financial mismanagement and historic child abuse at Kids Company, which has a base in Fortune Green.

The foundation stated that all donations it receives are used to run programmes for disadvantaged children in north London, such as breakfast clubs and music lessons.

Ms Wylie, of Highgate, wrote: “All of us at the AWTF have been watching with some dismay and great sadness the media coverage of various allegations being made against Kids Company.

“It is important not to lose sight of the dire situations in which many local children find themselves and helping them has been and will continue to be our focus.

“As has always been the case, the funds we raise will go directly towards running our programmes for disadvantaged children in north London.”

South London-based Kids Company has been embroiled in scandal since the government threatened last month to withhold £3million of funding unless founder Camila Batmanghelidjh stepped down as chief executive over concerns about the charity’s finances.

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Whistleblowers have since claimed that the charity has given cash to young people who have spent the money on alcohol, designer clothes and drugs, and that in June, it ran out of funds with which to pay its staff.

Two weeks ago, Metropolitan Police launched an investigation into multiple serious allegations of historic child abuse.

Last Wednesday evening, the charity shut down its services in the wake of the allegations.

Ms Wylie began working with Kids Company when she first founded AWTF in 2011 following the death of her 17-year-old daughter Alexandra from cancer nearly five years ago.

The foundation works with a key worker from Kids Company, who identifies and prioritises issues surrounding the care of vulnerable children for AWTF.

The foundation also runs activities for young people who receive support from Kids Company.

AWTF raises thousands of pounds every year for disadvantaged children by hosting events such as the annual Pinknic in the Park in Waterlow Park, Highgate.

Ms Wylie said: “We were impressed by the dedication and effective work being done by the north London Kids Company representatives and have heard many heart warming stories from children who are being helped.”