We were delighted to hear that we are one of the charities to be awarded £70,000 of funding from the Co-op Foundation to continue our work helping young people to improve their local spaces.

Funding will be used to help Young Citizens develop training, resources and support to involve more children and young people in improving their local community space. The project will run for the next two years involving approximately 4,000 young people. It builds on our previous Co-op Foundation grant that, despite the many challenges that COVID brought, saw over 250 practitioners undertake our free CPD training course ‘Social Action in Community Spaces’ and 30 primary schools taking part in the Make a Difference Challenge programme with a focus on spaces in their local communities.

"This last year has brought with it so many challenges, but, by us all staying so close to our homes, it has also highlighted how important our local community spaces are to our mental and physical health. Empowering children and young people to make a positive change in their local area not only benefits the community but provides them with a sense of agency and supports their wellbeing. We are really grateful to the Co-op Foundation for their continued support in such unprecedented times."
Stella Baynes, Social Action Manager at Young Citizens

This grant is from the Co-op Foundation’s #iwillFund. The #iwill Fund is a £50 million joint investment from the National Lottery Community Fund, using National Lottery funding, and the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) to support young people to access high quality social action opportunities. The Co-op Foundation acts as a match funder. Co-op Foundation has already awarded over £3m in grants since it first partnered with the #iwill Fund in 2017.

Our partnership with the #iwill Fund has shown the positive impact young people can have when they have the power to take action on issues they care about. “Grants awarded through this fund will empower young people to improve spaces that matter to them, making life better for local communities and building on their own skills and confidence.”
Jamie Ward-Smith, Chair of Co-op Foundation

The Co-op Foundation will launch further #iwill Fund grants in 2021. Co-op Foundation is the Co-op's charity. It helps people challenge inequality and co-operate for change so they can share a fairer future. Subscribe to the Co-op Foundation blog to find out first when funding applications open: www.coopfoundation.org.uk/blog.  

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