£80 million fund for youth sector

The government has announced an £80 million funding boost for England’s youth sector - helping provide opportunities for young people to get involved in their communities.

Local voluntary youth groups will be able to bid for a share of the funding, with sports clubs, arts and drama projects, volunteering opportunities and enterprise training groups likely to bid for funding.

The initiatives will be jointly delivered by the government and the Big Lottery Fund. £40 million will go towards the new Youth Investment Fund, targeting disadvantaged communities across England, while an additional £40 million will provide continued support for Step Up to Serve’s successful #IWill youth social action campaign.

Young people will be involved in the design and decision-making of the Youth Investment Fund, with the first awards are expected to be made in spring 2017.

The government is also expected to introduce the National Citizen Service Bill next week, outlining how to ensure the opportunities it offers are available to all.

Prime Minister Theresa May said: “This new funding demonstrates our commitment, and will be a huge boost for youth groups across the country - giving young people, especially those from disadvantaged backgrounds, the opportunity to gain the experiences and skills they need to succeed in life.

“This is all part of our determination to build a country that works for everyone– and ensure that young people can go as far as their talents allow, regardless of their backgrounds.”