Grants are available for not-for-profit organisations in the UK to improve the employment prospects of children and young people who face discrimination or disadvantage.

Funding body: BBC Children in Need
Maximum value: £ 80,000
Application deadline: 31/07/2020

BBC Children in Need and Youth Futures Foundation are partnering to deliver the new £6 million Inspiring Futures Programme.

The funding programme was created in response to the coronavirus/COVID-19 pandemic, which has increased the existing challenges for children and young people who are looking to access further education, training and work.

There are concerns that the impact of lockdown and prolonged social distancing post-lockdown will have a particularly detrimental effect on those who are already struggling to gain employment, and it will also reduce the opportunity for others to learn the skills and gain experiences that would help them gain employment when they are older.

Objectives of Fund
The funding is intended for positive activities which support children and young people who are facing barriers to achieve their potential on their journey towards employment.

Value Notes
A total of £6 million will be awarded in grants.

Grants of between £10,000 and £80,000 are available for work commencing in October 2020.

Who Can Apply
Not-for-profit organisations within the UK can apply.

To be eligible organisations must:

  • Be registered with the appropriate regulatory body, such as the relevant Charity Commission or Companies House.
  • Meet BBC Children in Need’s Minimum Standards for Grantmaking regarding safeguarding, governance and finances.

Applications from schools or educational bodies will be eligible if they can demonstrate:

  • Strong relationships with the local community and young people’s sector.
  • Clear evidence of them being best placed to deliver rather than within the wider community
  • Clear evidence of how the funding request is not a statutory duty.
  • The ability to evidence the restriction of funding and local decision making and governance. Eg, that the people spending the grant have the delegated authority to make decisions and deliver according to their grant request and that the wider organisation cannot control this.

United Kingdom

The following are not eligible for funding:

  • Activities that are considered statutory duty.
  • Prisons.
  • Hospitals.
  • Statutory bodies.

Eligible Expenditure
The funding is for projects that work with young people aged 10 to 24 in England and young people aged 10 to 18 in Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland who are experiencing discrimination or disadvantages which create short- or longer-term barriers to employment, especially those whose journeys towards employment have been further disrupted by the coronavirus/COVID-19 crisis.

Groups of children and young people that may be facing barriers include:

  • Children and young people from Black, Asian and minority ethnic communities, particularly those most at risk of facing disparities in the labour market (eg, Pakistani, Bangladeshi, Black, Mixed, Gypsy, Roma and Traveller heritage).
  • Those not in employment, education or training (NEET).
  • Young people who have experience of the care system.
  • Young parent or having a caring responsibility.
  • Those that are economically disadvantaged (eligible for free school meals) or living in an area of high deprivation.
  • Disabled children and young people and children and young people with learning disabilities.
  • Those affected by experience of the criminal justice system.
  • Those affected by exclusion from education or alternative education provision.
  • Those affected by homelessness.
  • Those affected by mental health issues.
  • Those affected by long-term health conditions.
  • Those affected by substance misuse.

Projects should identify three main differences (outcomes) they aim to make in the lives of the children and young people they work with and show the connection between these differences, and the positive journey towards employment. Outcomes could include (but are not limited to):

  • Improved life skills such as listening, speaking, problem solving, creativity, staying positive, aiming high, leadership and teamwork.
  • Positive relationships with trusted adults and organisations in order to provide opportunities, learning, advice, mentoring, coaching, experience or jobs.
  • Raised aspirations or horizons through new experiences and opportunities.
  • Increased appetite for lifelong training and learning that strengthens young people’s ability to adapt and take up new opportunities as they arise.
  • Improved core skills such as literacy and numeracy as a passport into training or employment.

Projects that achieve these outcomes and would be eligible for funding include (but are not limited to):

  • Delivery of positive activities like music, arts and sport that enables the development of work readiness skills and outcomes.
  • Providing a trusted, consistent advisor to help children and young people overcome barriers and achieve their personal goals.Delivery of personalised vocational, academic or employability skills, enterprise training, job search, or work experience.
  • Addressing barriers to employment such as mental and physical health problems, and housing issues.
  • Supporting young people into further education, training or employment that they may otherwise not have accessed.
  • Supporting young people through the provision of volunteering, work experience, paid jobs and transitioning to permanent work.
  • Connecting young people directly to sustainable employment opportunities.
  • The grants can be used to cover project and organisational costs, including planning and development for the future.

Projects should last between 12 and 18 months. Applicants should have a clear plan for the coming months regarding coronavirus/COVID-19 regulations but they can adapt delivery within the changing circumstances if necessary.

How To Apply
Applications will be accepted from 10 July to 11:30am on 31 July 2020.

Applicants may be asked to discuss and review their proposal with a BBC Children in Need assessor and must be available in August for an assessment.

The Fund is expected to be over-subscribed and only a proportion of applications will be successful. Decisions on applications will be communicated by mid-October 2020.

Guidelines are available on the BBC Children in Need website and applications must be submitted via BBC Children in Need’s Online Portal.

Useful Links
BBC Children in Need – Inspiring Futures
Youth Futures Foundation – Inspiring Futures

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