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Social action

Catch22 awarded NCS grant for delivery of experiences to help local teens become “world ready and work ready”

A group of young people wearing NCS tshirts stand together. They are all looking at each other rather than at the camera, smiling.

Catch22 have today announced a new community experience programme funded by NCS (National Citizen Service) that will support young people across Greater Manchester and the West Midlands.

The grant is part of a significant £20m funding package that NCS Trust has awarded to organisations across England for the delivery of community-based experiences at a local and grassroots level.

These new experiences will complement NCS’ existing away from home residential offer by providing more opportunities for teenagers to engage in local activities that foster skills development, deepen their understanding of the community, and empower them to contribute positively to its improvement. The grants will also support organisations that cater to specific groups of young people who may not have participated in previous NCS initiatives.

In collaboration with the National Youth Agency and StreetGames, NCS assessed more than 400 applications and Catch22 was selected as one of around 100 organisations to receive funding.

The grant will allow Catch22 to deliver 7,983 local community experiences across the West Midands area, giving over 2,650 young people the opportunity to gain new skills, develop their networks and make a positive contribution to where they live. Our partners in the West Midlands include Activate, YMCA and Sport4Life who are firmly embedded within their local communities.

In Greater Manchester, Catch22 will be partnering with Salford Foundation and Youth Federation to deliver 9,024 experiences reaching over 3,000 young people. Sessions are designed to be flexible and led by the needs of the young people, with a focus on making a positive impact on their personal development, local organisations and community.

Lisa Widdowson, Head of Operations (NCS) at Catch22, said:

“We are very excited to be involved in the Community Grants, and have chosen partners that are firmly rooted within the local community and have over 50 years combined NCS experience to share. The Community Grants will allow us to work with more young people, reaching more disadvantaged communities and having a more sustainable impact, as we have the opportunity to build relationships with young people over a longer time period.”

Mark Gifford, CEO of NCS Trust, added:

“I am delighted to welcome a diverse range of local, grassroots and community organisations from across the youth sector to deliver reimagined NCS experiences. This allows us to reach more young people than ever before, ensuring they are equipped with the skills and perspective to become work ready and world ready. Additionally, our grants for targeted experiences will enable us to reach underserved young people and communities. Together, we will work towards creating a country of confident, connected, caring citizens where everyone feels at home.”

Over the past decade, more than 800,000 young people have benefitted from an NCS experience, dedicating over 18 million hours to community based social action, while gaining invaluable life experiences.