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Themed grant round

A supportive home – helping families to overcome challenges

Run in partnership with Comic Relief. Applications open 27 September 2021.

Grant round opens:
27th September 2021

Our September 2021 themed grant round, in partnership with Comic Relief.


The Youth Endowment Fund exists to prevent children and young people becoming involved in violence. We do this by finding out what works and building a movement to put this knowledge into practice.

Having a supportive home helps to keep children safe from involvement in violence. Where children live in homes where there’s conflict or domestic abuse, alcohol or substance misuse or where other family members are involved in crime, they’re at higher risk.

That’s why we want to invest in programmes that support families. And that includes building our understanding of what works for children in the care system, who’re significantly overrepresented in the youth justice system.

The question we’re aiming to answer:

Which approaches are most effective in helping families and carers to create a supportive home environment for 6 to 14 year-old children (including looked-after children), reducing the likelihood of them becoming involved in violence?

What we’re aiming to invest in

We’ll aim to identify around 5-10 programmes to fund and evaluate. We’re planning to spend between £6 million and £10 million depending on the how well applications meet our criteria.

Scope of programmes we’ll fund in this round

We are interested in funding and evaluating programmes where the evidence of positive impact on children is promising. In this round we are focusing funding on four main areas:

  1. Parenting programmes (including programmes for foster carers or people working with children in residential care), which help parents and their children to develop positive behaviours and relationships.
  2. Family therapy interventions (including for children in foster care), which offer whole families structured forms of therapy.
  3. Programmes to reduce parental conflict, which are specifically designed to improve relationships between parents or carers.
  4. Domestic abuse interventions, which are specifically designed to prevent and reduce harm to children and adults.

Thinking about applying for this round?

Please read our prospectus update for the full scope of what programmes we’ll fund in this round. And also our prospectus (available in Welsh) for more information on our approach to evaluating the programmes we fund and what to expect if you become a YEF funded partner.

You may also want to begin discussing your bid with any partners you’ll want to work with, particularly if you are considering scaling-up your current programme with the help of YEF funding so it can be evaluated robustly.

If you have any questions about this upcoming grant round:

Working with you to make the right decisions

With our partners at Comic Relief, we’ve been listening to experts working in children’s services, the voluntary sector, in central and local government and the police. We’ve also heard from children and young people with lived or near experience of violence, who told us how they want us to use the £10 million we’ve pledged to invest in this round.

Alongside a detailed review of the existing evidence, your knowledge helped to refine the direction we’ll take in the grant round.

Why we’re focusing on this area

Our conversations with people working to keep children safe – and young people themselves – made it clear that we should focus on helping families. There’s also clear evidence that family support could be effective. But lots of the evidence is international rather than UK-based, and many of the underlying studies have limitations.

By funding programmes in England and Wales, we can build our knowledge of how best to support families, foster carers and children’s homes so that children have a supportive home.

Partnership with Comic Relief

Comic Relief are investing £2 million to help us find out how high-quality family support can help children who are most at risk of becoming involved in violence.

We want to thank Comic Relief for supporting this important area of work.


If you want to find out more about what we’re looking to fund and what the evidence says about family support, sign up to one of our introductory workshops:

Monday 20 September, 11:00 – 12:00pm

Thursday 23 September, 12:00- 1:00pm 

If you want to learn more about our application process and find out what makes a good proposal, sign up to one of our application workshops:

Wednesday 29 September, 2:00 – 3:00pm

Wednesday 6 October, 4:00 – 5:00pm

Thursday 21 October, 12:00 – 1:00pm

Monday 8 November, 10:30 – 11:30am

Thursday 25 November, 12:00 – 1:00pm


Applications for the grant round open on 27 September 2021, and we’ll be publishing more detailed guidance then.  Please ensure you read both the prospectus update and the prospectus (available in Welsh) before applying.

April – July 2021
Scoping workshops
In July 2021 we ran our scoping workshops with a variety of people and organisations working in this area and with young people with experience of crime and violence. These workshops are now closed.
9 August 2021
Scope of round announced
20 September 2021
Introductory workshop 1
23 September 2021
Introductory workshop 2
27 September 2021
Online applications open
29 September 2021
Application workshop
1 December 2021
Applications close
March 2022
Shortlisted applicants informed
April – September 2022
Shortlisted applicants co-design programme with evaluators
September 2022
Grants awarded

© 2021 The Youth Endowment Fund Charitable Trust. Registered Charity Number: 1185413.
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