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CashBack for Communities

More than 100,000 young people supported by scheme.

A youth programme unique to Scotland has helped transform the lives of 106,000 young people in the past three years.

The CashBack for Communities scheme reinvests seized criminal assets into community projects which support young people into positive destinations, diverting some away from potentially criminal or anti-social behaviour.

An evaluation of the latest phase of the programme, from 2017 to 2020, has found that of the 106,000 young people involved:

  • 78% reported an improvement in their wellbeing
  • 76% reported an increase in their confidence
  • 67% gained new jobs, skills or qualifications

The next phase of the programme will see £19 million invested between 24 organisations over the next three years.

Taking part in a virtual visit with new CashBack partners to mark the start of the next phase of the programme, Justice Secretary Humza Yousaf yesterday said:

“CashBack is a unique and potentially life-transforming programme that helps expand young people’s horizons and supports them to realise their ambitions and reach their full potential.

“I am delighted to see the positive impact that Phase 4 has had on our young people and look forward to building on this good work as we move to the next phase of the programme which will see £19 million invested between 24 organisations.

“Since the Scottish Government launched CashBack in 2008 we have delivered more than two and a half million activities and opportunities for young people and our latest round of funding takes total investment in the scheme to more than £100 million.”

Carolyn Lappin, Executive Director of YDance yesterday said:

“The award of support from CashBack for Communities recognises the work YDance does using dance participation to improve the lives of children and young people all over Scotland.

“CashBack for Change brings together two key youth arts organisations – YDance and Glass Performance – to deliver a wide-ranging programme which will benefit young people in the criminal justice system, and provide pathways for young people to divert their lives away from involvement in criminal behaviour and towards positive destinations and brighter futures.”

Kayla took part in the School of Rugby project having had issues with anger in the past and sometimes  difficulty controlling her temper, she yesterday said:

“Rugby set me straight, I put my anger into playing the sport right. Rugby has helped me through some difficult times and it's a positive thing to focus on."


The CashBack for Communities programme is a unique Scottish Government programme. It takes funds recovered through the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002 and invests them into community programmes, facilities and activities largely, though not exclusively, for young people at risk of turning to crime and anti-social behaviour.

Phase 4 of the Cashback for Communities programme began in 2017 and finished in 2020.  The aim of Phase 4 was to tackle inequalities by providing activities which raise the attainment, ambition and aspirations of disadvantaged young people.  More than two thirds (69%) of the 106,000 young people directly benefiting from Phase 4 activities were from Scotland’s most deprived areas.

Phase 4 Evaluation report.

A total of 24 organisations have been awarded funding for Phase 5 of the programme, running from 2020 to 2023. These awards take the total investment in the scheme to £110 million since it began in 2008.

The funding allocations for Phase 5 of CashBack for Communities are:

  • Access to Industry* – £500,000
  • Achieve More Scotland* – £500,000
  • Action for Children – £595,000
  • Barnardos – £555,000
  • Basketball Scotland – £460,000
  • Celtic Football Club Foundation – £600,000
  • Cyrenians* – £419,000
  • Eden Court* – £490,000
  • Impact Arts – £580,000
  • Includem* – £807,000
  • Mayfield and Easthouses Y2K* - £170,000
  • National Autistic Society – £650,000
  • Ocean Youth Trust – £517,000
  • Police Scotland’s peer mentoring project – £174,000
  • Princes Trust – £1,200,000
  • Rangers Charity Foundation* – £250,000
  • SFA – £2,000,000
  • Station House Media Unit* – £292,500
  • SPFL Trust* – £500,000
  • SRU – £1,500,000
  • Scottish Sports Futures – £1,332,000
  • Ydance* – £410,000
  • Youth Scotland – £1,700,000
  • Youthlink – £2,700,000

*New partners for phase 5. More details on individual projects are available on request. More information is available on the main CashBack for Communities website.


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