The government will provide an additional £12m towards youth projects as part of its “commitment to young people,” culture secretary Nicky Morgan announced today.
The funding includes up to £7m towards the Youth Accelerator Fund and £5m for the #iwill Fund.
The Youth Accelerator Fund will be divided between grants for youth projects across England and a place-based fund which will be delivered in partnership with “arm’s length bodies”.
The #iwill Fund is meant to encourage 10 to 20 year olds to take part in social action, such as volunteering in their communities by funding groups delivering these programmes. It is jointly funded by government and the National Lottery Community Fund, having been launched in 2016.
Youth investment fund
The funding boost is additional to the £500m Youth Investment Fund, which was announced earlier this year.
Half of the £500m Youth Investment Fund will be used to fund new youth centres, refurbish existing facilities and create more mobile clubs. The remainder will be invested activities, such as digital skills, culture, sport and social action as well as investment in the youth work profession.
The Youth Investment Fund will cost £500m over five years, including £68m in 2020/21. It consists of £250m capital and £250m resource spending.
The government will be investing £500,000 this year in a new Youth Worker Bursary Fund to attract youth workers from a variety of backgrounds. The government is also working with the National Youth Agency to renew the entry-level qualifications for youth work.
This will all be underpinned by the establishment of new Local Youth Partnerships across the country, designed to coordinate and sustain local youth activities. The government said these relate to the original £500m announcement and not the new £12m fund, but has not provided further detail about how they will work.
'Our young people have a wealth of knowledge, we must listen to their doubts and desires'
Nicky Morgan, secretary of state for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, has written an article for Civil Society Voices, which states: “This government has made no secret about its ambitious plans to level up every part of the UK and close opportunity gaps. It is at the heart of Conservative values, that everyone, no matter their background or where they are from, should be afforded the same opportunities.”
“I’m talking about a major pledge made at last month’s Conservative Party Conference, which we are underlining today: our commitment to young people,” Morgan added.
She said she has met “so many brilliant young people” taking part in initiatives, but “also met many young people who have found access to youth opportunities hard to come by.”
“That is why last month the Chancellor announced an ambitious, long-term £500m plan for our youth services that will give young people somewhere to go, something positive to do and someone to talk to,” she said.
As the government announces more funding for youth services, the secretary of state for the Department of Culture, Media and Sport, Nicky Morgan, explains why the government is committed to the sector.