YGM funding decisions: Money to create more positive spaces for young people in the borough

During the last seven months, a group of local young people aged 16-22 have been working hard to make grant-decisions that will benefit Islington’s young people. After a long process here are the 7 projects that they’ve decided to fund: 


I think the projects that we funded are going to have a huge impact particularly towards people’s wellbeing… and that’s been something that’s been sort of lacking over the last six months, so the fact that we have been able to fund projects around chats, arts based things… I think they’ll have a big impact on our borough. Poppy, Young Grant Maker 2020



Crafts Council – Reframe, Rethink, Reclaim: Through a programme of creative workshops with professional designer makers, creative coaching sessions and youth-led activity, the programme will give 30 Islington young people the opportunity to develop their confidence, individual creative voice, professional skills and understanding of creative careers. The process will support participants’ overall wellbeing and will foster community building, enabling participants to connect with other young people in the borough with similar interests, a network of makers and other young people the Crafts Council has worked with. 


                                                                       A group of young people doing crafts by @skulkingfaux via Unsplash


Small Green Shoots – The Future is Creative: A youth led charity that aims to give young people from disadvantaged backgrounds an opportunity to engage with music and the arts and learn the skills to help them develop careers within the creative industries. ‘The Future Is Creative’ is their new programme with the aim to give local young people the opportunity to plan and build their careers post Covid-19. 


MEWSO – Girl Matters: Support women from the Middle East and North Africa to thrive in Islington. Through Girl Matters they will empower 50 16-25 year old girls with foreign-born parents to take independent and informed choices about their lives by talking about sexual and reproductive health rights. 


Action Youth Boxing Intervention – Real Talk: Real Talk sessions are hour-long, intensive non-contact boxing training, combined with one-to-one mentoring and group work. In the 12 week programme, young people will be encouraged to self-identify challenges, develop self-awareness of irrational beliefs, change negative ways of thinking or belief systems, and to self-identify goals and plans to achieve them. Real Talk engages young people 13-18 in education or those who are not in education, training or employment and they plan to engage 200 young people over the period of a year.


Prospex – Girls Group: Their aim is to help and support young people aged 8-21 who are disadvantaged through poverty, realise their potential. The project will be a girls only group, running twice weekly sessions for 25 girls aged 14-19.  The project will look at different aspects of the girls’ lives, struggles and social issues and talk about these subjects in a holistic way. Providing a space which allows the girls to nurture their mind, body and soul, with the ability to promote self-worth and confidence.


The Dynamic Autism Group – DAGs Online project: Dynamic Autism’s aim is to advance education, to relieve ill-health by providing facilities in the interest of social welfare, recreation and leisure time occupation with the object of improving the conditions and quality of life for children and adults on the Autism Spectrum Disorder’ and their families and carers. During the Covid-19 crisis parents of young people with autism have been expressing their confusion, loneliness and complaining about the difficulties of how to provide motivating activities at home. The Online Project will be an hour online live session three times a week, running for 8 weeks. They will run Cooking, Art, Music, Sport and more.


Galbur Foundation – Promoting Mental Health Through the Arts: Theprogramme for young people from black, asian, minority-ethnic and refugee communities (BAMER), especially Arab and Somali speaking groups, is based on the outcome from previous art projects and feedback they received from young people. The Covid-19 pandemic and call for social isolation is adversely impacting the emotional and mental fragility and health of many BAMER communities. The programme they will deliver will take place during school holidays and will be delivered three times in a year (December, February and May). Each round of the programme will work with 12 people (age 11-17) and consists of poetry, photography and visual arts activities – and will culminate with a celebration of their own performance poetry.


Thanks to our Young Grant-Makers, our partners BBC Children in Need and The National Lottery Fund, who helped us run the programme in 2020 and everyone else involved in another successful round of the programme!