Formed in 2007, Mumford & Sons is a Grammy-nominated, British folk-rock band. Mumford & Sons members include Marcus Mumford, Ben Lovett and Ted Dwane. The band’s songs including “Little Lion Man,” “I Will Wait,” and “Believe” have an international following. However, beyond the music, with the goal of making a difference to the world, Mumford & Sons supports an array of charities. Below are overviews of three charities supported by Mumford & Sons and its philanthropy, The Gentlemen of the Road Fund.
What is The Gentlemen of the Road Fund?
In 2016, Mumford & Sons and Adam Tudhope, its manager, founded the Gentlemen of the Road Fund (GOTR). For every album cycle, the GOTR supports urgent needs in the cities in which the band performs. Also, the GOTR also selects to contribute to other local and global charities.
Here is an overview of three charities supported by Mumford & Sons:
War Child UK
War Child UK is a non-governmental organization that operates in Iraq, Yemen, Afghanistan, the Central African Republic and the Democratic Republic of Congo. Because war affects each of these countries, the goal of War Child is to reach children as quickly as possible when conflict breaks out. Specifically, the organization focuses on the protection, education, advocacy and livelihoods of children. It demands that children are the focus of humanitarian responses.
In 2020, the organization reached 171,992 people, 73% of whom were children. Over the past 25 years, War Child has frequently partnered with musicians and labels within the music industry to record albums and produce concerts. The money and awareness raised from these events allow War Child to bring aid to children living in conflict zones.
According to Rob Williams, the CEO of War Child, Mumford & Sons has supported the organization since 2013. He noted that together, they have raised over $5 million. That funding has helped more than 50,000 children forced to live in countries brutalized by war. Also, Mumford & Sons aided War Child in launching its sister organization, Children in Conflict which is located in the United States.
Deering Banjo Company
In 1975, the Deering Banjo Company began as a San Diego family business building banjos by hand. Today it has provided banjos to over 100,000 musicians including Ashley Campbell, Keith Urban and Winston Marshall, a former Mumford & Sons band member.
Although the company isn’t a charity itself, it has partnered with Mumford & Sons since January 2013 to create specialized banjos for a number of the band’s performances. The Deering banjos are then auctioned to benefit local charities supported by Mumford & Sons. Deering Banjo and Mumford & Sons have raised over $150,000 from 2013 through 2019 from banjo auctions.
For instance, in April 2019, Mumford & Sons performed a show in Lisbon, Portugal. The banjo made for that show sold for $1,524.28 and the money went to a charity called SOS Children’s Villages Portugal. This charity works to support children who have lost parents or who risk losing their parents. In the same month, the band performed in Milan, Italy, and the banjo for this particular show sold for $2,222. The proceeds went to Banco Alimentare, the food bank of Lombardy. The GOTR website shares 70 other examples of banjos sold for charity by Mumford & Sons.
Comic Relief is another one of the many charities supported by Mumford & Sons. Started in the United Kingdom in the late 1980s, it produces Red Nose Day, a popular biennial event celebrated around the world. The Red Nose Day Campaign funds programs to eradicate poverty and to keep children safe, educated, healthy and empowered. It works by bringing people together with laughter while raising money for children in need. The popular image of the Red Nose acts as a way for those involved to show their support.
Comic Relief collects donations from Red Nose Day and provides grants to charities throughout the world. It takes two years to distribute the money raised from Red Nose Day events. That gives charities time to apply for grants and ensures that Comic Relief is funding worthy charities. On Red Nose Day in 2019, Mumford & Sons worked with actors Carey Mulligan and Richard Curtis to raise more than $250,000 for Comic Relief and Children in Conflict.
A Model for Support
These are only three of the many charities supported by Mumford & Sons. To learn more about the band’s impressive past and present efforts to help those in need, head to the GOTR website.