A new fund of up to £6 million over 2 years to help voluntary organisations increase the number of young people aged 10 to 20 taking part in social action, has been launched by Nick Hurd, the Minister for Civil Society today.
The independent Campaign for Youth Social Action, led by HRH The Prince of Wales says that youth social action is ‘young people taking practical action in the service of others, of double benefit to young people and to society’. The campaign’s interim report ‘In the Service of Others’, which the government endorsed, showed that of the 8.4 million young people in the UK, only 29% are currently engaged in youth social action.
However, social action providers know this is often not due to an unwillingness to take part, as some of them have long waiting lists. This is also confirmed by the recent National Citizen Service (NCS) 2012 evaluation which showed that 71% of NCS participants said that they were more likely to help out in the future after having taken part in NCS.
The report identified that creating a journey between social action opportunities will be critical and that NCS could be a universal moment in a decade of opportunities.
Minister for Civil Society Nick Hurd said:
We want to create a social action journey that every young person can easily get involved with and feel valued, hone their skills, make new friends and ultimately benefit their community.
I’ve created this £6 million fund to support organisations to offer more young people places on their fantastic programmes benefiting the community as well as the young person themselves and make it easier for young people to progress onto the next challenging experience.
The Youth Social Action Journey Fund will support organisations to make this journey a reality by increasing the number of quality social action opportunities for young people aged 10 to 20, embedding NCS into this journey and improving the handover from one social action opportunity to the next.
Since 2011 NCS has worked with over 65,000 young people and it is growing so it can be available to all 16 and 17 year olds to support the important transition to adulthood.
Bids are invited from charities, social enterprises and for profit businesses already delivering high quality youth social action in England. In order to find out more about how this fund could help your programme create more places for young people and to bid for funding, see Youth Social Action Fund: call for ideas.
Deadline for applications is midnight 17 November 2013.