Can your community group empower young people?

Young people are best placed to come up with the solutions to the problems they face. If your community group works with young people to turn their ideas into a project, we want to hear from you.

Our Empowering Young People programme offers grants between £10,000 and £500,000 for projects that support young people aged 8 to 25 to overcome challenges in their lives. We want to see projects that get the young people themselves involved in developing ideas, designing and running the project.

Mayfield Village Blog pic

Mayfield Village Community Association in Newtownabbey are using £70,757 of National Lottery funding over three years to support young people to become role models and take the lead in delivering activities for others.

Helen Callaghan from the group said: “The young people, aged 14 to 18, will join a certified young leaders programme to develop new skills and improve their confidence and employability.

“They’ll organise sessions for other young people in the Mayfield Village area, including games nights, dance and drama, as well as producing a community magazine and making videos for their own YouTube channel.

“Guest speakers will talk about social issues which the young people have raised, such as social media, body image and substance misuse.”

Helen has this advice for applicants: “No matter how small your project is, just go for it and apply.

“If you’re doing a project with young people, involve them in the process and listen to them. Don’t assume that you know what they want or need

“For example, our young people told us they wanted a camera to put films on YouTube. I would never have thought of this.

“Don’t feel anxious – there’s plenty of help available from staff at The National Lottery Community Fund. Really make the most of your relationship with their funding staff.

“It can be difficult to put into words what you need. Having a visit from a funding officer really helps. We brought our young people along to this meeting to make sure they were involved in the whole process.

“Applying is a positive experience – when you pull together information for the application, it makes you realise what you have achieved and can be proud of.”

We welcome applications from constituted voluntary or community organisations, and social enterprises.

We’re looking to fund projects that meet one or more of these aims:

  • More young people have the skills they need for the future
  • Young people have better relationships with their support networks and communities
  • Young people have improved health and wellbeing

Choose a grant size and length that suits your project – anything from £10,000 to £500,000 over a period of 1-5 years.

We want to make things easy for you, especially if it is a small-scale project, and we’re keen to chat to you before you even put pen to paper.

Phone us on 028 9055 1455 or email us at to chat about your project.

Or see our website for more information on the Empowering Young People programme and how to apply.

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