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About the COVID-19 grant round


Watch our application webinar here:

Download the webinar presentation slides here.

What is the Youth Endowment Fund?
The Youth Endowment Fund is an independent charitable trust, run by the charity Impetus in partnership with the Early Intervention Foundation (EIF) and Social Investment Business.

We exist to prevent children and young people from getting caught up in crime and violence by making sure that those at most risk get the best possible support, as early as possible. We do this by funding, supporting and evaluating the most promising interventions working with 10 to 14 year olds in England and Wales to prevent later offending.

What is this fund for?
Our COVID-19 grant round will fund and evaluate work which supports vulnerable young people, predominantly aged 10 to 14, at risk of youth violence and can be delivered whilst adhering to UK government social distancing and stay-at-home guidelines.

Specifically, we are looking to fund and evaluate the following activities:

1. Digital/virtual delivery of programmes, specifically:
• Remote/digital/virtual delivery of programmes delivered on a one-to-one basis
• Remote/digital/virtual delivery of group-based programmes
• Remote/digital/virtual delivery of guided self-help or interactive content

2. Face-to-face activity that can be delivered whilst adhering to social distancing/stay at home guidelines, specifically:
• Face-to-face activity delivered within schools, including activities to help vulnerable young people return to school
• Face-to-face delivery of detached youth work

How much funding can I apply for?
The minimum grant your organisation can apply for is £25,000. There is no maximum, however grants awarded will be proportionate to the turnover of the organisation(s) applying. If you are applying for a one-year grant, we will not award a grant larger than 50% of your total income for the previous financial year.

What costs will the funding cover?
We will fund any costs that you need us to cover in order for you to be able to deliver the activities that you outline in your application. We provide funding which can be described as ‘full cost recovery’. This means that we fund both direct project costs, and proportionate overhead costs required to carry out the work.

Can universities apply the Full Economic Cost (fEC) methodology when applying for grants?
While the we operate a full cost recovery model, we do not approve funding at the level provided within fEC.  As a registered charity, we have a responsibility to ensure that all funding is proportionate and provides value for money whilst meeting our charitable objectives.  The full cost recovery model that we operate allows for proportionate recovery of overhead costs that must be covered in order for the projects we fund to be undertaken.  This means that you can claim for reasonable overheads that are directly related to the project you wish us to fund.

How are you defining ‘charities and social enterprises’?
We define charities and social enterprises as being any of the following legal types:
• Registered charity
• Charitable Incorporated Organisation
• Company Limited by Guarantee
• Community Interest Companies
• Industrial & Provident Societies
• Community Benefit Societies

Which type of organisations can apply?
An application can be made by any legally constituted organisation (both profit and non-profit), as long as they have a track record of delivering provision and support to young people to prevent youth violence.

This includes councils, local authorities, police and youth offending teams.

How are you defining ‘children and young people at risk of crime and violence’?
We are looking to fund and evaluate activities which support children and young people with any of the following characteristics:

• Has a criminal conviction
• Is receiving services from a Youth Offending Team or similar
• Is a registered Child in Need
• Is a Looked After Child
• Is at risk of school exclusion
• Has been excluded from school
• Is frequently truant
• Has a family member with criminal convictions
• Is at risk of gang membership
• Is in a gang
• Has low levels of educational achievement
• Has diagnosed mental health issues
• Has suffered abuse / early childhood trauma
• Has been a victim of crime
• Displays antisocial behaviour
• Displays high impulsivity/hyperactivity
• Has a history of weapon possession (e.g. knife, gun)
• Has a history of alcohol and/or substance use

What do you mean when you say that work must  ‘support young people, predominantly aged 10 to 14’ year? And how strict is the age range?

65% of the total number of young people participating in your Youth Endowment Fund funded activities must be aged between 10 and 14 years old.

However we understand that some programmes may be working with young people slightly younger or older than this. For example, we are aware that many projects work in secondary schools with 11-16 year olds. To be eligible, the majority of participants (i.e. over 65% of participants) need to be aged between 10 and 14.

How long should my funded activities run for?
It is up to you to determine how long you wish to deliver your activities for. In this round we will provide funding for work running for a minimum of 3 months and a maximum of one year from the point of award.

Please be mindful that you will need to run the proposed activities for the length of time specified in your application, regardless of how social distancing guidelines in the UK may change.

What is the expected time window for funded work to start delivery?
The aim of this funding round is to provide urgent support to at-risk children during the COVID-19 crisis, therefore we would like funded work to start as soon as possible.

If social distancing and stay-at-home measures are eased or lifted, can I change my planned activities?
No. A key aim of this grant round is to help us learn more about the best ways to reach and engage vulnerable young people during social distancing and stay-at-home guidelines. To do this, we will need to evaluate your funded activity for the specified duration of your activities. We will however work with successful applicants to understand the challenges and possible consequences should social distancing guidelines change.

How do you define virtual, digital and online activities?
Projects, programmes, interventions and practices which use technology with little or no physical face-to-face interaction between the delivering organisation and children / young people. For example, the use of websites, apps, video chat/conferencing, mobile messaging.

If I apply for funding of digital and virtual activities, does that mean there can be no face-to-face contact with the young people?
We recognise that digital and virtual activities will most likely require some level of face-to-face contact with the young people as well. In the application form, when describing what activities will be involved, please provide an outline of any accompanying face-to-face activities, so we can get a complete picture of your work.

Will you fund existing projects? What about pilots?
We can pay additional costs to help adjust the delivery of existing projects to reach vulnerable young people whilst social distancing and stay at home guidelines are in place.  However we cannot provide duplicate funding, so for existing projects we need to understand why additional funding is needed in order for the work to take place.  We will consider pilot work.  All applications will need to show how you have decided on the activities you wish to deliver, and how they will reach vulnerable young people at risk of youth violence.


Evidence and evaluation


What evidence do I need for the application form? Is it my responsibility to provide it?
You do not need to assess the evidence base for your proposed work and likelihood for success. However, if you are aware of existing independent research that would point to your likelihood of success in implementing your activities, as well as their potential outcomes, please tell us about it. This could be your own research or that of others.

To help, we have produced the following evidence summaries for each of the three strands of work we will be funding. Please read through and reference any related evidence to your planned activities where appropriate.

Virtual and Digital approaches
School-based approaches
Detached youth work approaches

What evaluation will be involved?
We evaluate every project we fund. If you are applying for funding for this round you need to be willing to work with the learning partner we appoint. We expect that successful applicants will work with us and the learning partner to determine how their activity can best contribute to this learning activity.

The types of learning activity we envisage include:
• Working with the learning partner to describe how and why your activity will work.
• Participating in webinars and other online learning tools to share experience and learning across the portfolio of activities.
• Participating in qualitative research methods to share your experience about how the activity is working.
• Exploring with the learning partner about the best ways to capture young people’s views about the activity.

Will programmes still be evaluated even if they already have rigorous evidence?
Yes. We evaluate every project we fund and this is a condition of funding.

Do I have to factor in the cost of evaluation into my funding request?
No. Your application does not need to include any costs relating to evaluation. This will be discussed with you and funded separately. Your grant application should only include details of the funding you need to deliver your activities.


Funding and finances


How will my organisation’s financial situation be factored into how you assess our application?
We have a responsibility to manage financial risk, because we want to ensure that the organisations we fund can successfully deliver their activities and support vulnerable young people for the full duration of their funding. When we look at organisational finances, we are looking from a risk point of view. We are not looking for organisations to have a particular level of income, have made a particular level of surplus or have a particular level of reserves; neither will organisations with high reserves be penalised.

My organisation isn’t facing any financial hardship, can I still apply?
Yes. Though half of the total funding available will be reserved for charities and social enterprises to help bolster the voluntary sector as it deals with the financial strains of the pandemic, we will be looking to fund and evaluate the most promising activities to support vulnerable young people. This means applications are welcome from all types of organisations, including those which are more financially secure.

Our organisation has furloughed staff, can this funding be used to pay for the remaining 20% of their salary?
No, this funding cannot be used to contribute towards costs of furloughed staff.

Will applying for this funding restrict me from applying for future grants from the Youth Endowment Fund?
No. Whether you are successful or unsuccessful in your application to this grant round, you will see be able to apply for future funding from us.

I was unsuccessful in the Youth Endowment Fund’s first grant round, can I apply for this funding?
Yes, as long as the activities for which you’re seeking funding for meet the fund’s criteria (i.e. digital/virtual delivery of programmes or face-to-face work in schools and detached youth work). We would however recommend that you review any feedback you received and, where possible or applicable, incorporate into this application.

I am currently or have previously been funded by one of the Youth Endowment Fund’s partners (Impetus or Social Investment Business), can I still apply for this funding?
Yes, applications to the Youth Endowment Fund will be reviewed independently of any existing relationship or committed funding.

Can I apply for funding for activities which are already part-funded?
Yes. Having secured other funding will not affect whether or not you are successful in being awarded a grant, however we need to know what proportion of the costs you are requesting in this application to ensure funding isn’t duplicated.




Can I submit more than one application?
Organisations delivering in multiple local authority areas can submit more than one application. However, we will only accept one application per organisation per local authority area. Additionally, if your organisation submits more than one application it needs to be clear why multiple applications are be needed.

If organisations are involved in multiple partnership bids, how will these be assessed?
Each application will be judged on its own merits. If an organisation is involved in multiple applications, and these reach the in-depth assessment stage we will discuss your ability and capacity to be able to work on multiple projects.

If we apply in partnership with other organisations, does that partnership need to remain exactly the same throughout the life of the grant?
Where organisations apply in partnership, we do want to be confident that the partnership will be in place for the life of the grant. However, we understand that sometimes things happen, and there is a need to adapt so we take a pragmatic view. We will be maintaining close relationships with the organisations we fund, and if there are issues with your partnership we would advise you to discuss these with us.

As a partnership, what’s the maximum amount of funding we can apply for?
The absolute maximum we would award would be 50% of the total income of the partnership.  However, please remember that we expect the average grant size to £50,000 so you should keep this in mind when submitting your applications.


The application process


How will my applications be assessed?
Our assessors have extensive experience in the youth sector. We will be looking to fund the projects most likely to reach vulnerable young people at risk of youth violence; we are not looking for the best written applications.  Shortlisted applications requesting more than £50,000 will be reviewed by our Grants and Evaluation Committee.

Who are the members of the Grants and Evaluation Committee?
A list of our Grants and Evaluation Committee members can be found here.

When will I find out if my application has been successful?
In order to provide applicants with quick feedback on their applications, we will be reviewing applications and making decisions on applications requesting less than £50,000 throughout the application window. For these applications we will aim to let you know whether or not we are able to provide you with funding within 3 weeks. Larger applications will be reviewed by our Grants and Evaluation Committee. We will communicate the specific time frame for decisions for larger grants directly with applicants. At the latest, all applicants will know whether or not we are able to provide funding no later than July 1st 2020.

Our organisation has furloughed the person/team that normally completes grant applications for us; can we ask them to work on an application to you?
The Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme Guidance provides information about what you can ask your employees to do while they are on furlough.  This states that you cannot ask your employee to do any work that makes money for your organisation or any organisation linked or associated with your organisation, or provides services for your organisation or any organisation linked or associated with your organisation.  This means that furloughed staff should not work on an application to this fund, or be the point of contact for the application.

Is there a downloadable version of the application form that we can complete?
No. We do not have a downloadable version of the form. This is because when we have done in the past, applicants have been confused as to what they should complete, the downloadable form or the online application. We do understand the challenges of completing grant applications, and that multiple people may be involved. That is why we detail all of the application questions in the guidance notes, provide question by question guidance to detail what we are looking for you to tell us, and advise applicants that they may wish to draft their answers offline before entering the information into our portal.

What documents do I need for the application form?
You do not need any specific documents.  If you wish to you can upload a gantt chart to help show when you will deliver activities you can, however this is not compulsory.  You will also need to complete a table providing us with some financial information; we have provided a template for this which you can download from the application.

Can I save my application and come back to it?
Yes you can.  Simply follow the instructions at the bottom of each page of the application.


If you have any other questions, please contact the Youth Endowment Fund’s grants team by emailing .