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Plymouth PL1 3HQ
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Young person with his hand raised

Youth funds

The Youth Opportunities Fund (YOF) and Youth Capital Fund (YCF) were launched in April 2006 to improve the provision of positive activities for young people, particularly those who are disadvantaged, in terms of more places to go and things to do. It is designed to put buying power directly in the hands of young people themselves and give them real influence over the range and nature of services on offer locally.

The YOF pays for young people’s activities - the sort of things they’d like to do but have never had the chance. This may include things like residential visits, DJ workshops, arts projects or any other projects which benefit other young people. The aim of the YOF is to involve young people, especially hard to reach young people, in identifying positive activities and things to do and support their role as decision makers, grant givers and project leaders. The YCF funds things like refurbishing buildings, buying mobile resources, and providing youth shelters and skate parks. Applications can be made to both funds to support separate parts of the same project.

Plymouth City Council’s youth service has been awarded £297,171 a year for the next three years through the YOF and YCF.

Funding worth more than £318,750 was allocated to 47 different youth projects across Plymouth last year, funding various sports groups, music and arts projects, youth cafés, youth drop-ins, residentials, trips, outdoor activities and much more.

The funds are managed by a group of young people from across Plymouth, who meet to consider and discuss each application and decide on how the money will be allocated, with set criteria to help them make those decisions. The criteria are based on the Every Child Matters policy outcomes, which are:

  • Being healthy
  • Staying safe
  • Enjoying and achieving
  • Making a positive contribution
  • Achieving economic well-being

Bids of up to £7,000 for the Opportunity Fund and £10,000 for the Capital Fund are being invited but bigger bids will be considered for special projects.

There are two stages of the application process. Groups of young people first make an idea submission application to the panel explaining what it is that they would like to do and how young people will benefit from their project. If this is successful, the applicant is sent a full application form with specific questions from the panel. Groups who are awarded funding support are expected to show how they have spent the money and evaluate their project against the aims laid out in their application.

If the panel decides to reject a submission, young people are given feedback on why they were unsuccessful and, in most cases, invited to adjust their proposals and reapply to the funds.

For more information about the funding or becoming a panel member telephone 01752 306597 or email

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