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£1.5 million to help young Scots into employment

Projects giving young people the skills and experience to help them into work are to benefit from a cash injection of over £1.5 million from the Big Lottery Fund announced yesterday (27 MAY). 

Announcing the three awards from the Fund’s Investing in Communities programme, Big Lottery Fund, Scotland Chair, Maureen McGinn, said: “These projects will boost the confidence and future prospects of many young people by giving them vital skills and training to prepare them for their future job search. And, as part of this support, they will also benefit from valuable, practical work experience. I am delighted that, through this investment, we will be able to help some of the most marginalised young people build productive positive futures.”

Young people with learning disabilities in East Renfrewshire and East Dunbartonshire will get help in developing their skills for future employment, thanks to a grant of £715,686 for ENABLE Scotland’s employment project.

David Cameron, Head of Employment for ENABLE Scotland said: “Thanks to the incredible support of The Big Lottery Fund, ENABLE Scotland will launch EAST (Employment Academy for Supported Training), an innovative employment project to support people who have learning disabilities enhance their skills and confidence in order to secure and sustain paid employment.

“Through EAST ENABLE Scotland’s employment team will work with young people aged 18 to 30 and assist them to develop personalised plans, which will lead them into employment. They will also receive benefit advice, travel support, pre-employability activities and six months of aftercare, to ensure employment is sustained.”

Action for Children's Moray Care Farming project will improve the skills, confidence and employability of vulnerable young people in Moray. A grant of £345,000 will go towards a 12-week programme that will focus on building self-confidence and life skills. Individuals will then get work experience with a local farmer or horticulturalist.

Sheila Erskine, Service Manager, Action for Children Moray and Aberdeen, said: “Action for Children is delighted to have received this award to support the care farming service in Moray. There are many benefits to the service including supporting young people to increase their employability skills; placement opportunities to support a career in agriculture and farming, and helping young people gain a qualification.”

Four Square (Scotland)’s new Springboard project will use their grant of £573,235 to provide an employability training and volunteer work placement scheme for people aged 25 years or over living in Edinburgh, who are furthest removed from the job market.

Heather Arni, Chief Executive, Four Square, said: “Four Square’s vision is that ‘everyone has a home and a place in their community’ and it strives to achieve this through working with people to overcome multiple barriers to employment such as homelessness, mental health issues, substance misuse and offending behavior.

“We are absolutely delighted to receive this Big Lottery funding as it will enable us to deliver our new Springboard project. We will provide accredited employability training, vocational training and work experience in Four Square’s social enterprise Edinburgh Furniture Initiative (EFI). This funding will assist us to work with some of the most vulnerable people in our community to make positive changes in their lives.”


Big Lottery Fund Press Office: 0141 242 1451
Out of hours media contact: 07823 552 889
Twitter: @BIGScotland #biglf 

Notes to editors

  • The Big Lottery Fund is responsible for giving out 40% of the money raised for good causes by the National Lottery.
  • The Fund is committed to bringing real improvements to communities and the lives of people most in need and has been rolling out grants to health, education, environment and charitable causes across the UK. Since its inception in 2004 it has awarded close to £6bn.
  • In the year ending 31 March 2013, 28% of total National Lottery revenue was returned to the Good Causes. Since the National Lottery began in 1994, £31 billion has been raised and more than 400,000 grants awarded.
  • The Scotland Committee makes Big Lottery Fund decisions on Scottish projects.  As well as taking devolved decisions on Lottery spending, the Committee, led by Chair, Maureen McGinn, has and will continue to play a strategic role in the future direction of BIG in Scotland.
  • The Big Lottery Fund is investing in Scotland’s communities through its Investing in Communities portfolio, as well as a number of small grants schemes.
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