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Help us shape the future of the Youth Endowment Fund

Our mission to keep children safe


The Youth Endowment Fund is a charity with a £200m endowment and a mission that matters. We exist to prevent children and young people becoming involved in violence.


How are we going to do that? Our strategy sets out how we’ll use evidence, expertise and young people’s voices to make children’s lives safer.


We’ll spend £200 million over ten years, to fund projects that help us learn more about what works to prevent children becoming involved in violence. And we’ll make sure that this knowledge is put into practice, so that services for children and young people are the best they can possibly be.


To put this plan into action, we need your help.


We want to hear from everyone whose work involves keeping children and young people safe from involvement in violence. Are you working for a community or youth charity, local authority, school, the police, a mental health service? We want you to sign up to take part.


Shape our priorities


We know that over the next decade, there are a lot of areas we need to cover. Now we need to decide where we’ll start. That’s why we’re asking for your help to choose the two theme areas we’ll focus our funding on, from now until 2023.


We’ve had some really useful conversations with people working across lots of different agencies to keep children and young people safe. And we’ve conducted our own review of the evidence that’s already out there. We’ve used what we’ve learned to develop some initial ideas about the themed areas where we want to focus our funding in the next three years:


1. Shut out at school: This theme would ask which approaches work best to prevent school absences and exclusion from mainstream school, which are linked to involvement in violence later in a child’s life.


2. Diverting from the criminal justice system: This theme would ask which approaches work best to support those children and young people who are already involved in crime or who are most at risk. They could involve individual, family or community support at critical points in a child’s life; for example, after they’ve been arrested or admitted into A&E following a violent assault.


We’ll spend the next nine years funding projects. So we’ve also started to think about some of the themes we’ll want to address in the longer term too:


  1. A trusted adult in your life: This theme would ask which approaches help to make sure children have a trusted adult in their life, through programmes including mentoring.
  2. Strong families, better futures: This theme would ask how we best support whole families, by helping them to strengthen their relationships. It might include interventions like home visiting and family therapy.
  3. New teams: This theme would ask how sport can give children and young people the chance to be part of a team or train with other people. It would look at how engaging children in new activities can give them the chance to “start to stop” any involvement in crime.
  4. A better start for children in care: This theme would ask how we can address the fact that looked-after children are disproportionately represented in the youth justice system. It could include targeted mental health, mentoring and individual skills-based approaches to offer children in care the support they need.
  5. Breaking the cycle: This theme would ask how restorative justice approaches can support children who have committed crime.
  6. Disrupting gangs and county lines: This theme would ask how we can prevent organised crime exploiting disadvantaged children.
We want to know:


  • Have we included the right things in the scope of these proposed themes?
  • Do you have any experience working in these areas? What do you think works and what doesn’t?
  • What are the specific challenges or issues we should be considering within these two areas?
  • Are there other areas you think we should prioritise first?
  • What have we missed?


Join us at events, sign-up for surveys and influence how we spend £200 million


We’ll be running a series of roundtables and surveys to make sure we’ve heard from you.  We want our discussions to improve our thinking, so that our investment makes a big impact over the next three years. We’ll listen to what you tell us – if these themes aren’t right, we’ll go in a different direction. And we’ll explain how we’ve made our decision.


We hope the conversations we have will just be the start of us developing the Youth Endowment Fund’s work together. Once we’ve selected a theme, we’ll need your help to make sure that the scope for our next grant round is right.


What to expect


October to December 2020 –  Join the discussions

Over the next few months we’ll be talking to people from a wide range of organisations and sectors to help decide what our funding priorities should be. To join the discussions, please click here.


February 2021 – Final decision on themes

After we’ve listened to your feedback we’ll produce a report that’ll explain the decision we’ve made on the theme of our next grant round 


January to April 2021 – Building insight and networks

With the themes confirmed, we’ll work to scope and further refine what we’ll be looking to fund. We’ll continue to consult with experts, examine the data and existing evidence, build networks, coalitions and partnerships, and listen to the views of young people.


Spring 2021 – Expressions of interest

We expect to open expressions of interest for our next themed grant round in late Spring or early Summer 2021.  

Sign up to take part


Click here to join the discussion

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© 2020 The Youth Endowment Fund Charitable Trust. Registered Charity Number: 1185413.