TUESDAY 15 MAY 2018
- Local communities, charities, youth centres and schools invited to bid for a share of £15m from the Fund, plus an additional £500,000 from Sport Unites
- Part of the Mayor’s major package of work to help tackle causes of youth violence and knife crime, while Government continues to cut funding
The Mayor, Sadiq Khan, has today invited community groups, charities, youth centres and schools to bid for funding from his new Young Londoners Fund, to help young people at risk of being caught up in crime.
The new Young Londoners Fund totals £45m over three years. Groups from across the capital are today encouraged to apply for a share of this year’s funding – £15m – for projects that offer skills, training, mentoring and help young people aspire to reach their potential and avoid getting caught up in crime.
The Mayor wants this new funding to reach young Londoners as soon as possible and so bids must be in before Monday 9 July, with money expected to be distributed once applications have been assessed. A further £500,000 is available specifically for community organisations to increase social integration and community cohesion through sport as part of the Sport Unites fund.
The Young Londoners Fund is one element of the Mayor’s comprehensive programme of measures to protect Londoners from knife crime, which includes publishing a dedicated Knife Crime Strategy for London last summer, announcing an unprecedented cash boost of £110m for the police this year including £15m specifically for the police to tackle knife crime, and launching his £8.8m Sport Unites programme to bring together people from different backgrounds and strengthening local communities.
The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan said: “Today I am launching the application process for community groups, charities,youth centres and schools to bid for a share of my Young Londoners Fund.
“I refuse to accept that nothing can be done to stem the appalling rise of violent crime we are seeing across the country. Community and grass-roots projects play a vital role in tackling the causes of violent of crime within our communities, and giving more young Londoners the skills, support and aspirations they need to turn away from crime and fulfil their potential.
”That’s why, today, I am encouraging groups working in the community to come forward with ideas that could help make a difference across the city.
“As Mayor, I’m determined to help more young Londoners make positive choices – choices that will not only improve their own lives, but help to keep them, our communities and all Londoners safer.”
Amina Mohamed, aged 20, is a member of City Hall’s Peer Outreach Team, a diverse group of young people aged between 15 and 25 who help to shape the policies that most affect them. Amina said: “This fund will provide countless opportunities to the young people who need it most. It is the start of very positive change around London and it couldn’t have come at a better time”
James Banks, of the London Funders, said: “London Funders welcomes this vital additional investment from the Mayor of London, at a critical time for the front-line community groups, charities and public services working to keep our city’s young people safe. Our members fund youth services in every London Borough, and know how needed the £45 million announced today is to our communities.
“We know the Mayor and his team have listened in developing the Young Londoners Fund – they’ve listened to young people, to people and communities affected by youth violence, and to those committed and talented staff and volunteers who are working across London every day to tackle the issues we face. It is by listening to these voices, learning from experience, shaping solutions together, and recognising the role everyone in every sector can play, that we’ll build a city that enables every young Londoner to fulfil their potential.”
Ciaran Rafferty, of the City Bridge Trust, said: “The City of London’s charitable funder, City Bridge Trust, welcomes and supports the creation of the Young Londoners Fund which is a significant investment in London’s young people. The Trust will do everything it can to support the successful delivery of the Fund in its aims to harness and support the rich and diverse assets of young Londoners.”
Central government continues to cut vital services including £39m from London’s youth services since 2011, which have resulted in the closure of some 81 youth centres*. The £45m Young Londoners Fund was created by Sadiq in March as a means to protect and support education, sport and cultural activities for young people to help tackle knife crime and youth violence, which has been rising across the country since 2014. It particularly seeks to help marginalised, low-income and Black Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) young Londoners who might otherwise be at risk of getting caught up in crime by providing aspirational and positive activities to help them reach their true potential.
Since 2010-11, the Met’s general grant funding from the Government has fallen by more than £700 million, or nearly 40 per cent in real terms, on a like-for-like basis. In recent years, the Met Police have had to find roughly £600m of savings and the Mayor has found a further £150million of savings since he took office.