Changing Lives Harlow receive vital cash boost

Charity / Fri 17th Dec 2021 at 08:39am

ORGANISATIONS across the county are today welcoming good news from the Essex Violence and Vulnerability Unit (VVU) as the VVU confirms the recipients of its community grant programme.

Over 50 applications were received and after evaluation 20 organisations were awarded a combined total of £370,499.

Changing Lives Harlow have received £20,000 for supporting the development of the Community Hub for young people to feel safe and have access to sports activities.

The calibre of applications was so high, and the need for financial support within the voluntary sector so strong, that the Community Safety Development Fund of the Essex PFCC joined with the VVU to provide a larger combined pot of funds.

Not for profit local organisations could apply for up to £20k to deliver work that is proven to have a positive impact on priority issues for young people. These priority issues were identified over the last 12 months through running listening workshops with young people across Essex.

The issues young people deem priority are those relating to serious violence, exploitation or young people’s mental health. They were also keen to see more detached youth work, increased safer spaces for young people and opportunities for young people to learn life skills and participate in community based or volunteering session. The need for better communication between schools, youth groups and the police was raised and young people were keen to support projects that recognised this.

The grants awarded all support work within these priority areas and range from funding youth workers, counsellors and mentors through to youth club sessions, outdoor activities and educational sessions.

Roger Hirst, Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner for Essex and Chair of the Violence and Vulnerability Round Table said: “We know that if young people have the knowledge, the support and information, and the divisionary activities in place, they are less likely to become involved in crime, drugs and anti-social behaviour.

“The voluntary and not for profit sector work incredibly hard in communities with young people to provide them with this support. However, these organisations have been hit really hard financially over the last 18 months, while the need for their support within these communities has not gone away.

“After seeing the calibre of work happening across Essex to support our children, young people and their families, it was an easy decision to increase the level of funding to support more projects.

“I’m delighted we’ve been able to fund so many varied initiatives and I look forward to seeing the work in action and the difference it makes to so many. Congratulations to all involved.”

The funding is for projects running from January 2022 through to March 2023. A full list of organisations and their location is below.

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