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£1 million for young people in Northern Ireland

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Northern Ireland
Empowering Young People
Release date:
10 4 2018

Young people in west Belfast are being supported to make safer choices and avoid anti-social behaviour, thanks to a share of almost £1 million of National Lottery funding.

St Peter's Immaculata Youth Club has been awarded £499,736 from Big Lottery Fund’s Empowering Young People programme. The money is being used for the five year Hidden Communities project to improve the education and life opportunities of young people from the Divis area. The project is working with parents and young people to help tackle issues including personal safety and supporting young people to avoid anti-social and criminal activity.

One of the highlights of the project is a strand working with local schools St. Josephs and St. Peters to deliver a personal safety programme for children aged 8-11. Young people are helping to lead a development programme for teenagers who are at risk of criminal or self-harming activities. Young people from the project will become leaders and role models in the wider community by joining youth forums outside the Divis area.

The project is also supporting young people who have been involved in antisocial behaviour.

Newry and Mourne Enterprise Agency have also received £499,560 in National Lottery funding. The five-year Work4UPlus project is working with young people aged 13 - 20 from the Newry, Down, south Armagh and Banbridge areas who face barriers to learning and/or employment, or who may take part in risky behaviour.

The money is being used to support these young people to deal with the challenges they face by increasing their confidence, skills and well-being, and helping them to reach their education, training and work goals.

The group is working with the Education Authority, Future Proof which is based in Banbridge, and Alliance Youth Works, and is running activities including training on sexual health and risky behaviour, independent living, driving theory practice/test, ICT, social media skills, and a work experience placement.

Julie Harrison, Big Lottery Fund NI Chair, said: “I am delighted to announce these grants under the Empowering Young People programme.

“We want to fund great projects that put young people in the lead in increasing their skills and confidence, and support them to have stronger relationships so they can cope better with the challenges they face and reach their potential. We are looking forward to seeing the positive impact these projects will make for many young people across Northern Ireland.

“I want to say thanks to all the National Lottery players who have helped make this possible.”

More information about the Empowering Young People funding programme can be found on our website, www.biglotteryfund.org.uk. Please ring our enquiries line on 028 90 551 455 if you have any questions.

For press enquiries call Lucy Gollogly or Rachel Skinner in Big Lottery Fund NI.
Press Office: 02890 551 432 or 02890 551 450
Out of hours media contact: 07580 811135 or 0774 7532 846

Website: http://www.biglotteryfund.org.uk/northernireland
Twitter: @BIGNIonline #BigLottery
Facebook: www.facebook.com/BigLotteryFundNI

Notes to Editors:

  • The Big Lottery Fund supports the aspirations of people who want to make life better for their communities across the UK. We are responsible for giving out 40% of the money raised by the National Lottery and invest over £650 million a year in projects big and small in health, education, environment and charitable purposes.
  • Since June 2004 we have awarded over £6.5 billion to projects that make a difference to people and communities in need, from early years intervention to commemorative travel funding for World War Two veterans.
  • Since the National Lottery began in 1994, £35 billion has been raised and more than 490,000 grants awarded.