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I visited City Hall with JPF to assess bids for the Mayor’s Young Londoners Fund

I visited City Hall with JPF to assess bids for the Mayor’s Young Londoners Fund

On the 13th April, I – and a few others from the Jack Petchey Foundation Achiever’s Network – went to City Hall to help assess bids from organisations across London for the Mayor’s Young Londoners Fund. The fund is a pocket of £45m designed to help organisations with youth-orientated projects.

It was originally created after young people across London raised our voices about concerns around the increase of knife crime and teenagers being introduced to the wrong things. We felt like there wasn’t enough funding provided to youth clubs and organisations…and, through this fund, we were heard.

Following the initial conference in April, where the programme was first introduced, we were re-invited to assess small bid applications, of up to £99K in August. On the 1st of August young people from a diverse selection of charities including myself, participated in reviewing applications at City Hall. To know that what we did had the potential to change lives made the occasion quite serious.

The way it all worked was, we were each given many bid applications from youth organisations across all London boroughs. We were then given the three main questions orientated around young people that also included how young people shape the project themselves. With those questions we had to grade each of the bids between 1-5. 1 being a response with no real evidence and 5 – meaning all aspects of the questions were met.

All the applications were from organisations doing completely different things and it was quite inspiring to see that other teenagers had found hobbies in, some that you wouldn’t imagine. They were based around: the arts, sports, creative media, awareness campaigns, professional development and many more. Grading the applications made everyone, including myself, feel quite significant. At the end of the session we were able to feedback on the whole process to the entire group and understand why a group liked certain bids.

At the second conference, two weeks later, we were assessing bids of up to £1.5m which was quite intense and, knowing that we had a lot of money in our hands, made it even more important.

It’s going to be great to see that what we did will have a real and lasting impact and to see the changes that we have made to other teenagers.

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