Uniformed youth groups to expand with £5m funding boost

By Gabriella Jozwiak

| 10 September 2018

A further £5m has been set aside to uniformed youth groups to expand into deprived areas and offer places to vulnerable young people, the government has announced.

Government has announced £5m to further expand provision of uniformed youth work. Picture: Girlguiding

The money, from the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, will be managed and distributed by the Youth United Foundation, to support expansion of police cadets, Scouts, Guides and faith-based organisations. The aim is to create an additional 5,500 places.

Youth United previously established 20,000 such places with £10m of funding between 2014 and 2016.

The government also wants groups to use the money to create more opportunities for adults to volunteer with uniformed youth work, and reduce waiting lists for over-subscribed clubs.

Minister for sport and civil society Tracey Crouch said uniformed youth groups help "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," she said.

Youth United director Samantha Hyde said the new funding would allow deprived young people to 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," she said.

The foundation is formed of 11 uniformed youth organisations, including Army Cadets Force, Boys' Brigade, Fire Cadets, Girls' Brigade, Girlguiding, Jewish Lads' and Girls' Brigade, Royal Air Force Cadets, St. John Ambulance, Sea Cadets, The Scout Association and Volunteer Police Cadets.

A Girlguiding spokesperson said: "The announcement today of a fund to enable youth organisations to reach more young people is really welcome news.

"Through our recently launched programme of badges and activities, we provide our 400,000 young members with the opportunity to discover and develop their interests, skills and confidence, take on new challenges and have fun and adventure with their friends.

"We know of the enormous benefit of guiding to our members and welcome any opportunity to reach even more girls and young women."

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