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Charity

4,000 young people to benefit from largest ever National Express Foundation grants

The National Express Foundation, a charity that helps disadvantaged young people, has once again pledged life changing sums of money to young people via community groups and educational institutions this month.

Since it was launched in 2012, Foundation funding has helped over 22,000 young people. Combined with a round of funding earlier in the year, this year’s grant is expected to benefit over 4,000 young people by supporting them with the cost of their studies and also helping groups to deliver educational and developmental activities for youth in the community.

Anthony Vigor, Chairman of the National Express Foundation, said: “We are delighted to announce the second round National Express Foundation funding awards for 2019. This is the largest grant we have ever made in a single year, with a total of over £450,000 of funding pledged this year to support over 4,000 young people. We are proud that this funding will help deliver even more positive and developmental activities for local young people and help those who might not otherwise be able to continue with their studies in further and higher education.”

The second funding round of 2019 opened back in October, with groups tasked with providing a simple ‘elevator pitch’ to the team as part of a new, streamlined application process. With over 150 applications received, a rigorous sifting process took place before 15 community groups were awarded a total of £167,500 in funding.

A further £60,000 will be awarded to the University of Bath and Queen Alexandra College Birmingham over three years.

Queen Alexandra College is an independent specialist college of further education based in Harborne for students above the age of sixteen with visual impairment, autism and other disabilities. The college will use a grand of £10,000 for three years to support students enrolled on their supported internship course. Students that study and work part time will be encouraged to apply for bursaries allowing them to fund their own specialist equipment and resources allowing them to participate in internships and studies that may not otherwise have been possible.

Jan Gormley, Deputy Principal said: “QAC supports young people with disabilities on their journey to independence and being awarded this grant is fantastic news for our Student Internship programme and will make a huge difference. Our Student Intern numbers have increased recently and this money will be used to provide them with equipment and resources they need to not only get the most out of their internship placements, but also help equip them with the skills and confidence they need to enter the workplace beyond their time at QAC”

Moseley Road Baths will use a grant of £10,000 to provide lifeguard training over two years to young potential lifeguards from the local Balsall Heath community. The programme will target NEET young people and candidates able to lifeguard single sex ladies swimming. The organisation are passionate about promoting an active lifestyle at a young age and providing skills necessary for employment which will have a hugely positive effect on the local area which is affected by high levels of deprivation.

Karen Leach, Chair Moseley Road Baths CIO, said: “We are absolutely delighted with the award which will enable us to provide lifeguard training courses. This will have such a beneficial effect in giving young people a very valuable qualification and helping them gain confidence, willingness and skills for everyday life.”

The full list of community groups to benefit from the Foundation’s second round community grant funding in 2019 are:

Cannon Street Memorial Baptist Church (CSMBC) – £10,000

Coventry Youth for Christ – £10,000

EmployabilityUK – £20,000

Gather Dudley CIC – £5,000

Hall Green Youth – £5,000

Maidstone & Mid Kent Mind – £10,000

Moseley Road Baths CIO – £10,000

New Testament Church of God – Highgate Birmingham – £10,000

Positive Youth Foundation- £20,000

Springs Church – £2,500

Tara Martins Community Project CIC – £10,000

The Cultural Connection – £5,000

The Wildlife Trust for Birmingham and the Black Country – £20,000

Young Enterprise – £20,000

Young Lives Foundation – £10,000

Read more about the National Express Foundation here.

For more information on the community groups funded this round please click here, and for more information on the educational institution bursary awards please click here.