Changing Futures Fund

Strengthening and Developing the Voluntary Youth Sector in Worcestershire

The Changing Futures Fund was introduced by Worcestershire County Council in 2012 as an innovative approach to providing advice, guidance and support to the voluntary and community sector. £250,000 per year for three years was made available for the scheme and funded the provision of specified expertise under nine themes. These included Marketing, Fundraising, New Ways of Working and Positive Activities.

Young Solutions had several staff members approved as providers to deliver support within five of the themes and it allowed us to work more in-depth and provide more specific and targeted support to local youth organisations. During the three years of the scheme, we delivered 34 packages of Changing Futures Fund support. A large proportion of these were within our specialist area of Positive Activities (including Setting Up a Club, Health and Safety/Safeguarding and Involving Young People), but these were often complemented by other support, including Fundraising/Bidding for Contracts and Understanding Outcomes.

The list of Young Solutions achievements in the three years was notable. We:

  • undertook ten safeguarding reviews – producing revised and bespoke safeguarding policies and training for youth organisations around the county
  • raised almost £130,000 through fundraising advice and support
  • prepared practical, comprehensive and appropriate health & safety and staff/volunteer handbooks for nine organisations
  • helped two youth organisations introduce ASDAN accredited youth work activities

One of the beneficiaries of our work was Broadway Youth Club who were successful in applying for funding and with Young Solutions assistance were able to obtain a grant of more than £7000.  One of their management committee members said “on behalf of us all at the Club, I would like to thank you most sincerely for all of your assistance and hard work in connection with the application”.

Bewdley Youth Cafe were another grateful recipient. “Clubs like ours really benefit from the help we got from Young Solutions through Changing Futures Fund. They brought a wider and different view and this helped us think about what we wanted to do and how we best present what we wanted to do.  We don’t have any conflict of interest with Young Solutions so we could have open and honest in the discussions about the issues we wanted to tackle. You need organisations like Young Solutions as they can bring things together.” Sarah Watton – Youth Club Coordinator

The Changing Futures Fund has now closed although we are currently exploring whether we can deliver a small scale scheme designed to strengthen and sustain voluntary youth organisations.

Keeping young people
safe and involved

in Worcestershire

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