Seven agencies awarded new funding to continue vital youth work in Perth and Kinross

Following an agreement in July 2023 between Perth and Kinross Council and The Gannochy Trust to extend funding for the Strategic Youth Work Partnership, the original seven agencies that were awarded contracts in 2019, have been re-awarded £1,755,524 of funding over the next five years from April 2024 to March 2029.

The agencies to be awarded the new funding are the LOGOS Youth Project in Strathearn and Strathallan, Kinross Youth Enterprise (KYTHE) in Kinross-shire, Almond and Earn, Strathmore Centre for Youth Development (SCYD), the Alyth Youth Partnership (AYP), and Coupar Angus Youth Activities Group in Eastern Perthshire (CAYAG), The Breathe Project in Highland and Strathtay, and YMCA Tayside in Perth City.

The five-year funding package will help these agencies continue their positive work and maintain the momentum in delivering high quality, accessible youth work services across the region.

An external qualitive evaluation of the impact of the partnership by the University of Dundee in 2023, found that over the first four years of delivery, Strategic Youth Work Partners have not only stopped the decline of young people accessing youth work in Perth and Kinross, but they have also reached more than five times as many young people in 2023 than they did in 2017.

The report also clearly demonstrates that the work supported by the Partnership has made a significant impact on young people, whose engagement in constructive activities and positive relationships with trusted adults has been made possible only through the considered allocation of the Partnership’s funds.

The Strategic Youth Work Partnership has provided many tangible benefits to young people including extensive opportunities for socialising and the development of social skills; enhanced confidence, self-esteem and connection to one another and their community; communication skills; a strengthened sense of identity and resilience; and the achievement of accredited awards.

Underpinning all these impacts is a sense that their engagement in the universal youth work offer has developed a commitment on the part of participating young people to making a positive contribution to their communities; and empowering them to act on that commitment.

In their first five years of collaborative working, the Partnership is reaching more young people, has doubled their staff, volunteers and delivery locations, and are looking forward to building on their success over the next five years to ensure the best start for young people in Perth and Kinross.

Andy Duncan, Chief Executive The Gannochy Trust said:

“In partnership with Perth and Kinross Council we are delighted to be awarding five more years of funding to allow the Strategic Youth Work Partnership to continue its vital work across the region. Our decision to choose the same seven agencies is testament to their success in connecting with young people and developing their opportunities for a brighter and more certain future.”

 Thomas Glen, Chief Executive, Perth and Kinross Council, said:

“The Strategic Youth Work Partnership continues to be a fantastic example of partners working to create a sustainable model for delivering services to young people across Perth and Kinross. The commitment of The Gannochy Trust, local partner organisations and our own youth services team has allowed us collectively to provide multiyear financial certainty for local services. This in turn has let the local services focus on their role in engaging, supporting and empowering young people to develop and play active roles in their local communities. It’s a model we will seek to continue to support and develop in work with other groups and around other strategic themes.”

Franny McGrath, Development Manager, YMCA Tayside said:

“When investment in youth work has drastically decreased across the UK, this vital funding from The Gannochy Trust and Perth and Kinross Council has enabled us to increase our capacity by employing more youth workers and extend our services to more young people than ever before.”

Layla Riddoch, a young person from Perth, said:

“Being part of the universal youth work was brilliant, not only could I come together with my friends for our own drop in, we would also get to meet new young people from Aberfeldy, Kinross, and Crieff. We got great opportunities to socialise and work with a wide range of other young people through organised activities and events.  Before the universal partnership there was hardly anywhere we could go, but over the last few years there has been a huge increase in youth clubs opening in lots more communities, which means more young people can have a safe warm place to go where we are valued.”