In Funding Stories, Life skills, education & employability

Project: Youth Concern drop-in centre renovation
Grant: £4,500
Fund: #iwill

Following four days of volunteer work, a group of 18 young people all helped to renovate the Youth Concern centre, whilst also gaining a City & Guilds Entry Level 3 qualification.

The project was aimed at vulnerable or disadvantaged young people in Aylesbury who are not in employment, education of training (NEET). Together they contributed more than 300 volunteer hours to the project.

Through the project the grant has given young people:

  • A positive experience of volunteering and social action
  • New vocational DIY and trade skills
  • For some, their first experience of any form of vocational training since/outside of school and also the achievement of their first vocational training qualification of any kind
  • Increased ability and confidence across a range of key softer employability skills (such as teamwork, expressing ideas and time management) and improved employability prospects as a result
  • A greater sense of ownership and responsibility for a drop-in centre they use and benefit from
  • New friendships with other young people at the centre and a greater sense of belonging
  • Role models in the form of the VIY mentors they worked with on the project

Case Study

23 year-old Zeeshan was referred into the project by Aylesbury Job Centre. Zeeshan is long-term unemployed and was attracted to the opportunity to volunteer and do something for his community, whilst learning new skills.

He ultimately committed more than 50 volunteer hours to the project and successfully achieved the entry level City & Guilds qualification. He is now targeting a starter job as a painter and decorator with the support of Job Centre Plus.