“By the end of the course we all felt like a family.”
These are the words of 22 year old Sangitta Bassi, one of 15 young people who reaped the benefits of the Young, Confident and Connected (YCC) project run by CEMVO Scotland. The project received almost £50,000 through the Young Start funding programme, which Big Lottery Fund runs in Scotland to distribute pennies and pounds left behind in dormant bank and building society accounts.
And Sangitta is not alone. Thousands of other young people across Scotland have benefitted from Young Start funding. In the recently published Young Start Evaluation, we looked at the impact of this funding since the launch of Young Start in March 2012 until November last year. In that period, more than £16.6 million was given out in the form of 393 grants to Scottish projects helping children and young people aged eight to 24 become more healthy, more enterprising, better connected and more confident.
“The project really boosted my confidence…”
Again, Sangitta’s words are reflected across the 393 projects. Our evaluation showed that taking part in projects had multiple and interconnected benefits for young people, and increased confidence was the most commonly reported outcome.
Through Young Start, we’ve also aimed to fund projects that will involve children and young people in the design, delivery and management of their work, and make the best use of their strengths. This means that not only do young people get a big say in the projects they’re involved in, but they also build up skills and experience to help them in their lives and to give back to their community. Sangitta told us:
“Taking part in the YCC programme made me aware of being more active in ethnic minority communities, and being a leader as well – especially as a representative of young women. I’m now a CEMVO board member and attend monthly meetings.”
With Young Start continuing to make grants into 2015, a lot more young people stand to gain from our dormant bank accounts, just like Sangitta.
For more information, read the full evaluation report and case studies on our website.
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