Lewis Hamilton pledges £20m for his new Mission 44 charity

© Steve Etherington for Mercedes-Benz Grand Prix Ltd.

Lewis Hamilton has announced the launch of his new charitable foundation called “Mission 44”, which will work together with the newly announced Ignite initiative.

Mission 44 is launched on the heels of the Hamilton Commission’s recently released report, and it will “support, champion and empower young people from underrepresented groups in the UK”.

The foundation will be managed by CEO Jason Arthur, who has previously worked as the Deputy Chief Executive of the Step Up To Serve charity and a Cabinet Member for Finance and Health in Haringey, alongside his other teaching positions.

Lewis has pledged £20m of his personal funds to the foundation, to help with its mission to assist organisations and programmes that narrow the gap in employment and education systems, and increase diversity within leadership and civic leadership positions.

To support Mission 44, Hamilton and Mercedes have launched a joint “Ignite” initiative that will focus on “increasing the pipeline of more diverse talent aiming to enter the motorsport industry – and igniting and inspiring enthusiasm for motorsport through STEM education”.

Lewis gave his comments on the launch of Mission 44.

“Supporting the ambitions of underrepresented young people has always been important to me and Mission 44 represents my commitment to create real change within this community,” said the Briton.

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“In my early life, I experienced first-hand how coming from an underrepresented background can affect your future but, luckily for me, I was able to overcome those odds through opportunity and support.

“I want to ensure that other young people from similar backgrounds are able to do the same,” Lewis concluded.

Mercedes team boss Toto Wolff also gave his comments on the Launch of both Mission 44 and the Ignite initiative.

“We are delighted and proud to be standing alongside Lewis today for the announcement of Mission 44 and the Ignite initiative,” said the Austrian.

“Lewis has long spoken about the challenges he has faced in motorsport. His determination to turn his experience into such powerful and decisive action is a measure of both his character and his unwavering commitment to support people to fulfil their potential.

“At Mercedes, we have listened and worked closely with Lewis over the last year to understand how we can help open up our sport to achieve a more diverse and inclusive workforce within our own team.

“The opportunity to work together through Ignite, with Mission 44 and our own Accelerate 25 programme, is both exciting and challenging,” concluded Wolff.

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