Youth charity reports significant expansion

By Tristan Donovan

| 24 August 2017

A charity founded by Olympic gold medallist Dame Kelly Holmes almost trebled the number of disadvantaged young people it worked with in 2016/17.

The Dame Kelly Holmes Trust wants to offer its programmes in every part of the UK by 2020. Picture: Dame Kelly Holmes Trust

The Dame Kelly Holmes Trust's annual report said that 3,198 young people took part in its long-term programmes in 60 deprived areas of England, Scotland and Wales during the year. This compares with 1,112 young people in 41 areas in 2015/16.

The trust's long-term mentoring programmes are delivered by world-class athletes and seek to help young people go on to lead positive lives. During 2016/17 the programmes worked with young offenders, care leavers, and young women at risk of sexual exploitation among others.

The charity is working towards offering its programmes, which last between eight and 14 months, in every area of the UK by 2020. 

In its annual report the trust said that for every pound it spent on its flagship programme, Get on Track, a social return of £4.30 was generated.

The expansion of the charity's work comes despite its income for the year falling below expectations. The trust raised £3.2m in 2016/17, down £460,000 on the year before.

As a result, the charity made a surplus of £2,581 in 2016/17 compared with £528,833 the year before.

Michael Kelly, chair of the board of trustees at the charity, said: "Last year we embarked on a bold and ambitious four-year strategy, which set out to not just inspire but transform the lives of young people facing disadvantage across every area of the UK, through the support of our world-class athletes.

"We are delighted to report that, as a result of this vision - and due to the strength of our partnerships and generosity of our supporters - we have been able to reach the highest number of young people across the most amount of areas through our transformational programmes in the charity's nine-year history.

"As we strive towards our 2020 vision, we will require the support of exceptional partners and supporters more than ever before."

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