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Our decision-making process for Another chance

Find out how we decided to take projects through to co-design

We want to be completely transparent about how we assessed your applications for Another chance. We tried to be as fair as possible and base our decisions on scores against the assessment criteria we set out in our prospectus, while also making sure that the projects progressing to next stage were based across England and Wales.

Step one: assessment by our Programme Managers

When applications closed, our Programmes team scored over 300 applications. They’d gone through a rigorous training programme to help us make sure that we were being consistent in our marking against the eight criteria set out in our prospectus. We also double scored roughly a quarter of all the applications, to make sure our scoring was similar across team members.

Step two: internal panels

Following out initial assessment, our Programmes team met to identify the top 50 applications. To make our decisions, we reviewed:

  • The scores each application received against each of the eight criteria set out in our prospectus.
  • The point at which a child would be referred onto a project, so that we could run research on diversion programmes at different points in the system. For example, we wanted to fund some projects where children were known to social care but hadn’t been arrested and others that provided support to children after they’d been arrested.
  • Where the project would primarily be delivering. This helped us to make sure we were funding programmes that would support children all over England and Wales.  

Step three: assessment by our Evaluation Managers

Our Evaluation team assessed the top 50 applications, so that we could get a better understanding of the type of evaluation we’d need to run for each project and whether it was feasible. Through this process, they identified 23 projects to take to the next stage.

Step four: interviews

We invited the top 23 projects to an interview with us, so that we could ask detailed questions about the proposals in their application. These were all tailored to each project; for example, if one had scored slightly lower on our requirement that they’d be able to deliver at scale, we’d ask them exactly how they plan to reach enough children for us to be able to run a robust type of evaluation (like a randomised control trial).

It was also an opportunity to share our approach to evidence and evaluation, to make sure that applicants agreed to help their independent evaluators run the research elements of the project.

Step five: the Grants and Evaluation Committee

Finally, all of our teams (including senior leadership) came together to make the final decision on which projects we would take forward to decision meeting of our Grants and Evaluation Committee. They are a group of experts in youth participation, education leadership, grant-making and academia, who review and approve all of our funding decisions.  

They then made the decision on the final projects we’ll take through to co-design phase.

What happens next?

It’s important to say that we haven’t guaranteed funding for all of the projects that have gone to the next stage of the application process. From now until the autumn, they’ll be working with an independent evaluator to help them co-design the research elements of the project. Once the final project has been agreed, in November our Grants and Evaluation Committee will decide who we’ll fund for delivery.

For more information on our application process, you can read page 31 of the application process guidance for this grant round.

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