THIS IS AN ARCHIVED NEWS RELEASE FROM GMPCC.ORG.UK
Greater Manchester Mayor and Police and Crime Commissioner Tony Lloyd has announced he will be investing £950,000 into youth projects across Greater Manchester, each designed to raise young people’s aspirations, improve their life opportunities, and divert them away from a life of crime.
The projects typically receive funds of between £5,000 and £30,000, and are spread across the region. They use a mix of drama, sport, mentoring, training, and workshops to help young people make better life choices.
“I’ve been running this scheme since 2014 and I’ve seen the difference it makes. Each project is different, but they are all built around the needs of children and young people.
“If we can raise young people’s aspirations from a young age; if we can show them that life is worth living and living well, then we can help set them on the right path and encourage them to make positive life decisions.”
Some schemes are designed to provide general support and boost self-esteem through activities and guidance, while others have been set up to help children with particular needs or to tackle specific issues such as child sexual exploitation, domestic abuse, and drug and alcohol misuse.
The Bury Teen Club in Bury has been awarded £5,000 to work with young care leavers at risk from offending.
Davina Hanley, Bury Children’s Rights Worker said: “This funding will enable children and young people in care and care leavers to be provided with information and advice about the risks attached to some of their behaviours.
“Sadly, a higher proportion of children and young people in care, in comparison with their peers, experience challenging situations in life: this can lead to offending, substance and alcohol abuse, poor mental health, low educational achievements, going missing from home and overall low self-esteem and aspirations.
“The CiCC hopes that this funding will help to influence a change for this vulnerable group of children and young people. They will be working with local specialist services to build up trust and understanding about how they can help with drugs and alcohol misuse, health problems, anti-social behaviour.”
The Youth Aspiration Fund opened for applications in November 2016 and, in total, 199 applications were received, requesting a total of £3.6m.
Subject to due diligence checks, nearly £600,000 is to be distributed to 28 Youth Aspiration Fund schemes across Greater Manchester, and a further £350,000 will be used to sustain 7 existing schemes that have previously received funding and are now making a real difference to the lives of children and young people.
Supporting children in Manchester, Salford and Trafford, the Interserve project run by Manchester Young Lives has been awarded £60,000 over two years to continue supporting young people at risk from child sexual exploitation (CSE).
Manchester Young Lives Chief Executive, Paul Fletcher, said: “Manchester Young Lives is working with very vulnerable young people who have been exposed to CSE through relationships, grooming, trafficking and peer pressure; our work in the communities, schools and colleges is raising awareness of this very serious issue, helping young people to be empowered and informed to keep safe.”