Government invests £5m to increase places for disadvantaged children in youth organisations
Government investment will also support and expand adult volunteering programme
• 5,500 places to be created for young people to join uniformed youth groups
• Funding will support expansion and development of new groups
A new £5 million fund will increase places in uniformed youth groups to reach vulnerable young people and allow for expansion in deprived areas, Minister for Civil Society Tracey Crouch announced.
An estimated 5,500 spaces will be created in groups such as police cadets, Scouts, Guides and faith-based organisations to help reduce waiting lists for these in-demand local clubs.
The fund will help organisations open new groups in deprived areas across England and allow more children to benefit from weekly activities, camps or volunteering programmes - helping to boost their wellbeing, mental health and life skills.
In addition, the Uniformed Youth Fund, will provide more opportunities for adults to get involved in projects and volunteer their time in order to grow and sustain groups in their community.
Tracey Crouch, Minister for Sport and Civil Society, said:
"Organisations like the Guides and Sea Cadets play a key role in so many childhoods. They create lasting friendships and teach important life skills such as teamwork and resilience.
"This fund strengthens our support for young people by ensuring that even more children have access to these groups and are helped to reach their full potential."
Samantha Hyde, Director at Youth United Foundation, said:
"We are delighted to be able to expand our important work with children and young people living in the some of the most deprived regions in the country, providing them with the opportunity to join a uniformed youth group and, as a result, gain a range of life-changing skills and experiences.
"We strive to increase opportunities in areas and communities where there are least provisions and the most need, to ensure that young people of all backgrounds are able to succeed."
The Fund will be distributed and managed by Youth United Foundation, a member organisations for uniformed youth groups.
The Fund will also lay the foundations for groups to continue to expand and tackle waiting lists beyond the current financial year.
The announcement follows the recent Civil Society Strategy where the government promised to work alongside uniformed youth groups to consider how they can expand in disadvantaged areas.