Yoko Ono donates £100,000 to LJMU

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Yoko Ono outside John Lennon’s childhood home, Mendips © Trinity Mirror

Yoko Ono has donated £100,000 to Liverpool John Moores University, which will be awarded to vulnerable students during the next two years.

John Lennon’s widow has given the money to provide support for youngsters who have been in local authority care, or are estranged from their parents.

The money will be used to extend the University’s John Lennon Imagine Awards, established in 2009, following another donation from the Yoko Ono Spirit Foundation.

The scheme offers bursaries of £1,000 to students who qualify at the university, which is home to the course where Lennon attended the School of Art and Design in 1957.

In 2009, 50  students came forward and qualified for the annual John Lennon Imagine Award £1,000 bursary, but in 2012 this increased to over 200 students.

Yoko Ono said: “When we set off down this path in 2009, I don’t think we imagined just how effective this practical help would prove to be. Our first set of students has now successfully graduated and they are in turn now helping to mentor those just starting out at the University.

“I know that these awards, set up in John’s name, have made a real difference to the lives of these young people and I am delighted and proud that John’s legacy lives on in such a force for good.”

One student who has benefited from the Awards said, “It is good to know that there are people that actually care. It’s an unbelievable feeling and one that I have never felt before.”

LJMU Vice-Chancellor Professor Nigel Weatherill said: “The importance of studying at university on improving life chances cannot be underestimated and LJMU has always demonstrated a true commitment to helping students reach their full potential, regardless of background and circumstance.

“We are extremely grateful for Yoko’s continued support of this unique and vitally important initiative, the success of which has surpassed all of our expectations.”


About Hayley Minn, JMU Journalism