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£1.2 million fund opens to help grassroots community groups offering support to young people facing barriers to employment

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Release date:
11 10 2018

Big Lottery Fund, the largest funder of community activity in the UK, has today opened a £1.2 million fund using money from dormant bank accounts. This fund will help small community groups grow so they can better support young people facing barriers to employment.

The new scheme, the Youth Capacity Fund, will go to grassroots community groups in Birmingham, Bradford, and Barking & Dagenham, three areas facing particular challenges in relation to youth unemployment. Funding will enable organisations to improve their capacity to work with young people and build partnerships across their local area. It is being administered and managed by the Big Lottery Fund, which will give grants of up to £50,000 to successful applicants.

This follows the Government’s announcement at the beginning of 2018 that £90 million from dormant bank and building society accounts will be allocated to an ambitious youth initiative. A new organisation will be established to distribute this funding to help young people facing barriers to work to reach their full potential, with a focus on data from the Race Disparity Audit. The Youth Capacity Fund has been drawn from the £90 million to provide funding to small groups while the new organisation is setting up.

Big Lottery Fund held a series of engagement events across the country between March and July this year. Young people from diverse communities took centre stage at these sessions to explain the issues they face and discussed ideas to remove barriers to education, employment and training, including the importance of being supported by people they trust, working within their communities.

The Youth Capacity Fund will help those trusted, small groups already embedded within communities and engaged with young people to develop partnerships and build on their work and capacity to deliver more for young people.

Tracey Crouch, Minister for Sport and Civil Society, said: “We are committed to ensuring that everyone has the chance to reach their full potential. This fund will support organisations that help young people find a job by teaching them important life skills."

Dawn Austwick, Chief Executive of the Big Lottery Fund, said: “Speaking to young people, stakeholders and youth groups earlier this year really highlighted the important role grassroots community groups play in supporting and engaging young people. This new funding will support some of those groups to strengthen their offer and widen the impact of their work, whether that’s by improving their fundraising capacity, developing their staff or working in collaboration with other organisations.”

To find out more or apply for funding from the Youth Capacity Fund, visit https://www.biglotteryfund.org.uk/funding/programmes/youth-capacity-fund


Claire Fudge: Claire.Fudge@biglotteryfund.org.uk, 0121 345 8856
Press Office: 020 7211 1888
Out of hours media contact: 07867 500572

Notes to Editors:

The Big Lottery Fund uses money raised by National Lottery players to help communities achieve their ambitions. From small, local projects to UK-wide initiatives, our funding brings people together to make a difference to their health, wellbeing and environment. Since June 2004 we have awarded £8.5 billion to projects that improve the lives of millions of people.

Ethnicity Facts and Figures

Find out about how ethnicity effects people's everyday lives on the Ethnicity Facts and Figures website: https://bit.ly/2ILPgRL

Dormant Accounts

Dormant accounts are funds that have lain dormant in consumer bank and building society accounts for more than 15 years. The Dormant Bank and Building Society Accounts Act (2008) set up a scheme whereby dormant funds can be transferred by banks on a voluntary basis to a reclaim fund. The Reclaim Fund Ltd. (RFL) maintains a reserve to meet potential reclaims from customers and surplus funds are then transferred to the Big Lottery Fund for distribution to good causes in the UK. Funds are split on a percentage formula set out in legislation between England and the Devolved Regions and a total of more than £500m has been made available since the scheme came into effect in 2011.