£330 million to tackle societal challenges

£330 million from dormant bank and building society accounts will be used to help the homeless, disadvantaged young people, local charities and other good causes in the UK over the next four years.

Tracey Crouch, Minister for Sport and Civil Society, announced that £280 million of the finances will target initiatives across England that help disadvantaged young people into work, provide housing for families and vulnerable people, and tackle problem debt.

Of this allocation, up to £135 million will be used by Big Society Capital (BSC) to fund stable and long-term accommodation for vulnerable groups, £90 million will also be invested in support of projects that help disadvantaged young people into employment, while the remaining £55 million is set to be awarded to financial inclusion and capability initiatives which will tackle issues such as problem debt.

Of the initial £330 million, roughly £50 million will be made available for good causes in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland and will be distributed by the Big Lottery Fund, with each devolved administration deciding how best to use the funds.

Crouch said: “By unlocking millions of pounds from dormant accounts for a range of good causes, we can make a real difference to lives and communities across the country. This is part of the Government’s commitment to building a fairer society and tackling the social injustices that hold people back from achieving their full potential.

“I am grateful to the banks and building societies, as well as Reclaim Fund Ltd, for their work to free up these funds for good causes. Working in close partnership with the financial sector and civil society, we are determined to help create a country that works for everyone and build a Britain fit for the future.”

Dawn Austwick, chief executive of Big Lottery Fund, said: “The Dormant Bank and Building Society Accounts Act has made over half a billion pounds available for good causes in the UK. The Big Lottery Fund is proud to be the organisation which distributes these funds and we look forward to working with government and others to do this. This funding will give people the opportunity to take the lead in making lasting and sustainable change in their lives and communities.”

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