Cost of living grants worth a tenth of charities’ turnover on offer

A £5m fund has been launched by the charity UK Youth and grant maker the Pears Foundation to support youth charities amid the cost-of-living crisis.

On offer to organisations, with an annual income of no more than £500,000, are three-year unrestricted grants worth up to around 10% of applicants’ annual turnover. This is being offered to reflect the impact of double digit inflation in recent months on their finances.

UK Youth and Pears Foundation said youth charities are facing a “perfect storm of threats” caused by the cost of living crisis, including higher demand, rising costs, falling funding and challenges recruiting volunteers.

Pears Foundation executive chair Trevor Pears said youth clubs are “the heart” of communities adding “many of these clubs are under threat and we must act now if we are to ensure their survival”.

The fund opens at 10am on 2 February and applicants will be notified of the outcome of their bid within four to six weeks.

“Youth organisations play an essential role in helping young people to find their place in society, to support their wellbeing and development, and to realise their full potential,” said UK Youth chief executive Ndidi Okezie.

“However, in recent years, the challenges posed by the pandemic and now the worst cost of living crisis since the 1950s, mean that many organisations are having to go even further – often with fewer staff, less funding and increased demand. Those pressures ultimately mean less support for young people at a time when they need it most.

“We are delighted that the Pears Foundation have donated £5m as we launch the UK Youth Fund for youth organisations that are struggling. We expect a huge number of applications and know the grants will make a vital difference to thousands of young people across the country.

“But we know the next generation needs even more support – so we hope other funders, the business community, government and even individual supporters who can afford to donate, will do whatever they can to increase youth work provision for as many young people as possible.”

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