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The Best Grants for Young People’s Projects


Through active participation, young people are empowered to play a vital role in their own development as well as the wider community.


By investing in helping the next generation learn essential life skills, this can aid them in developing their knowledge and enhancing their confidence.


To ensure today’s youth are gaining as much value as possible, funding is crucial. With this in mind - here’s our list of the best grants for young people’s projects in the UK:


Funding for Young People’s Projects

No matter what the purpose is, projects for young people make them better prepared for the future ahead. According to the National Occupational Standards for Youth Work, young people’s projects “enable young people to develop holistically”, working with them to facilitate their personal, social and educational development, develop their voice, find their place in society and reach their full potential.


The below list of grants are merely a few available for such projects. Read on to find out more about these, as well as how you can get the support you need to find and secure more funds.


The National Lottery Community Fund: Empowering Young People

The Empowering Young People programme provides funding to organisations that aim to help young people (between the ages of 8 and 25) make positive changes within themselves and their community. Project priorities should revolve around enabling participants to embrace their strengths, build their skill and take greater control of their futures.


The specific requirements for this funding are projects which help young people:

  • Get the skills they need for their future

  • Have better relationships with their support networks and communities

  • Have good health and wellbeing

  • Face and overcome challenges

This is an ongoing funding opportunity available in Northern Ireland. It is suitable for voluntary or community organisations, and offers a funding size of £10,000 to £500,000.

young people's projects
Image credit: Holt Youth Project

Andy Fanshawe Memorial Trust

The Andy Fanshawe Memorial Trust exists to give grants to support disadvantaged young people develop an existing interest in adventurous activities. This includes walking, climbing, cycling, kayaking, sailing, horse riding - either self-planned or for residential courses at an outdoor centre.


Funds are usually awarded to individuals or small groups exclusively within the UK. The specific criteria for this grant are as follows:

  • You (or the young person/people for whom you are applying) are developing existing experience and interest

  • There is an element of adventure in your plans

  • The activity is taking place within the UK

  • You have done some fundraising for the activity or adventure

  • You are prepared to write a short report after your adventure/s

While this is a rolling programme, the Trust does state that there is a yearly cap of eight to twelve grants averaging £400 each.

Garfield Weston Foundation

The Garfield Weston Foundation supports a wide range of causes across the UK, donating over £80 million annually.


The Foundation gives specifically to charities that are committed to supporting and inspiring young people to achieve their full potential. These charitable organisations can range from small local groups (such as girl guides and youth clubs) to larger national youth development charities.


Projects of any and all sizes can apply, providing they meet the essential criteria. Listed below are the vast funding opportunities available via Garfield Weston:

  • Regular grants (for applications below £100,000)

  • Major grants (for applications of £100,000 or more)

  • Capital (bricks and mortar or tangible things such as a building project, repairs or equipment)

  • Revenue (e.g. ‘core costs’, which are typically unrestricted and go towards the costs of your activity, such as general costs and expenses the organisation incurs when delivering its work)

  • Project costs (a specific project or activity that you need funds for)

young people's sports projects
Image credit: Sport England

Sport England: Small Grants Programme

The Sport England Small Grants Programme provides funding for not-for-profit clubs, local authorities and schools that wish to encourage more people to be involved in sport.


Awards of £300-£10,000 are possible, and applications must detail how the new project responds to the effects of the Coronavirus pandemic.


Funding priorities include organisations working with communities who’ve suffered worse health outcomes and the most significantly reduced activity levels as a result of the pandemic. Groups that fall within this category are girls and women, young people aged 16-24 and older people aged 70+.


While the programme will close for applications at the end of December 2021, Sport England will launch a new alternative called ‘Queen's Platinum Jubilee Activity Fund’ in January 2022. The aim of this will be to provide funding of up to £10,000 for sport and physical activity projects that tackle inequalities and build stronger communities.

ardoyne youth club
Image credit: FundReady

Secure More Funding With FundReady

FundReady is Ireland’s leading funding information and support service for not-for-profit organisations. Powered by S3 Solutions, we offer a digital platform and team of specialist advisors that can provide you with access to the latest funding opportunities, professional advice and practical support to write and submit applications. The service is tailored and aligned to the funding needs and profile of each organisation.


One example of how FundReady has helped a youth project in the past is Ardoyne Youth Club. Over the past 50 years, the Club has offered youth work provision within the North Belfast area, helping to develop young people from a personal, social and educational standpoint.


Ardoyne Youth Club also has a wider role within the community: supporting the development of better community relations; working to reduce youth involvement in criminal activity; working with other agencies and partners to address educational underachievement; and supporting young people to deal with the impacts of substance misuse.


Through FundReady, S3 Solutions has had a productive working relationship with Ardoyne Youth Club for 8 years. Our support has been funding focused, and we have supported Ardoyne Youth Club to secure over £1.5 million in revenue funding and £500,000 in capital funding.


For more information on securing grants for young people's projects, get in touch with the S3 Solutions team today.