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13 July, 2009

The Youth of Today Leadership Fund will invest in innovative projects at a local level

The Youth of Today, of which the Citizenship Foundation is a partner, has unveiled a £1million youth sector investment fund to support innovative leadership opportunities for young people.

Between 2009 and 2011, The Youth of Today Leadership Fund, managed by the Young Foundation, will invest in up to 40 third sector organisations delivering leadership programmes for young people across England.

The Youth of Today Leadership Fund will invest in innovative projects at a local level that will have as great a social impact as possible. Over the next two years, up to 30 investments of £5,000‑£20,000 will be made to small, innovative third sector organisations to help them grow and allow more users to benefit from their services.

In addition, up to eight investments of £50,000-£100,000 will be made to more established third sector organisations to help them extend their reach to new groups. Funded organisations will have access to business support and learning and capacity-building opportunities.

The fund is being managed by the Young Foundation as part of its work on The Youth of Today, a major initiative to increase the quality, quantity and diversity of opportunities for young people as leaders of change in their communities. The TYOT is funded by Department for Children, Schools and Families.

The Youth of Today Leadership Fund has been set up to address gaps in the provision of leadership opportunities available to young people. The Fund will help to support programmes with funding and help to identify new innovations that could lead to greater sustainability and creativity in the sector in the long term.

The Young Foundation is also leading a programme of research on youth leadership, as part of their contribution to The Youth of Today. This comprises several publications, a youth leadership website capturing international best practice, and a series of international workshops and exchanges.

The Youth of Today consortium involves six other leading youth organisations including the British Youth Council, Changemakers, the Citizenship Foundation, The National Youth Agency, the Prince's Trust and the UK Youth Parliament. The consortium will deliver a range of opportunities over the next two years, including a Youth Fellowship programme, a ministerial shadowing scheme, a programme for youth engagement with local councils, a young leaders campaign, and many others.

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