Better Futures - supporting organisations which help disadvantaged young people to reach their full potential

The Better Futures initiative is not open to applications.



This initiative aims to support organisations and projects which could deliver significant benefits to young people from disadvantaged and vulnerable backgrounds, particularly in light of the economic recession which has had a disproportionate effect on them, and the 2011 riots which highlighted the need for more services for the young people most affected by the downturn.

The initiative supports organisations which aim to address some of the underlying causes of the 2011 riots, and which offer effective, long-term solutions.

Following a tender process, we awarded £300,000 to Catch22 and £290,000 to YMCA England in 2013. 

The grant to YMCA England is to run a new national street work youth project involving three YMCAs working in some of the most deprived estates in the country to help young people aged 10-25 at risk of gang involvement and knife crime.

The grant to Catch22 is for Engage in Education, an intensive programme of support for secondary school pupils at high risk of exclusion from mainstream education.  The project will involve at least 200 young people aged 11-14 in Greater Manchester, and will focus on pupils with low attainment, poor attendance, prior records of exclusion and complex needs, including social, emotional and behavioural difficulties.

An example of the work being produced by the young people that RECLAIM work with:

"On Wednesday 22nd April, it was exactly 22 years since Stephen Lawrence was murdered in Eltham, South London.  Our young people chose this tragedy for one of their campaigns.  Their powerful film is on the link below:


Other Better Futures grants are:


One in a Million - £143,000 for a 3 year out of school hour arts and sports programme in deprived areas of Bradford.

RECLAIM - £136,000 for a 3 year leadership programme for young people in deprived areas of Manchester.


Making the Leap - £150,000 for a 3 year employment skills training and employment project for young people from disadvantaged areas of Brent in North West London.


Stephen Lawrence Charitable Trust - £150,000 for a 2 year project which will support disadvantaged young people from deprived areas of Greenwich and Deptford in Southeast London into further or higher education, or employment. 


ReachOut - £80,000 for a two year project aimed at ensuring ongoing participation amongst the most difficult to engage disadvantaged young people from ReachOut’s partner schools in four deprived London boroughs.