Mayor funds more projects for young Londoners

01 October 2019

Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, has announced another £2.4m to support activities for young people through his £45m Young Londoners Fund.

The funding will support some 35 projects over the next three years. Together, these will enable more than 8,000 young Londoners to take part in meaningful, positive activities.

The aim of the fund is to help children and young people aged 10 to 21, particularly those at risk of getting caught up in crime. It supports a range of education, sports, cultural and other activities to help young Londoners reach their potential. 

We’ve funded everything from filmmaking in Newham to music and sports in Camden, boxing in Croydon, adventure playgrounds in Hackney and social action in Enfield.

These projects mean the Young Londoners Fund has invested £23.3m so far, supporting more than 80,000 young Londoners. 

Commenting on the announcement,  Adam Ballard, Director of Gloves Not Gunz, said:

"Gloves Not Gunz are absolutely delighted that we have been given funding through the Young Londoners Fund to ensure that we can offer free positive interventions to the young people of Croydon for the next three years. We strongly believe in the power of sport and using this as a tool to engage and inspire young people at risk of serious youth violence and those at risk of school exclusion. This funding will allow us to expand our services to even more young people in order to affect positive change."

You can read more about the funded projects below. To find out more about where the projects will be delivering and the age of the young people they will be supporting please visit the London Datastore.


The 35 organisations receiving the Young Londoners Fund are:


The Advocacy Academy delivering their Social Justice Leadership Fellowship, which gives young people with lived experience of injustice the knowledge, skills, and confidence to channel their anger and frustration into championing positive social change for themselves and their local communities. Through education and action their Advocates learn to analyse socio-political conditions in their communities, identify innovative solutions to problems they have experienced, and leverage their power to realise lasting change. Through civic participation they increase their confidence, broaden their networks, and feel a greater sense of ownership of their lives, their futures, and their community.

Balik Arts delivering Youth Screen and Sound, allowing young people, mainly but not only, from Turkish/Kurdish communities who are at risk of social exclusion or criminal activity to become meaningfully involved in music and film activities leading to participation in a festival of film and music in their local area. They will gain skills in music making and film literacy alongside valuable experience of festival production, through participation in high profile public events. They will become part of a network that offers long term opportunities both professionally and socially. Their role as active citizens will allow skills sharing with younger teens as the project progresses.

Code 7 delivering TRUE Project (The Road to Unlocking Excellence). The TRUE project is a multimedia and mentoring project that was designed through engagement, consultation and conversation with a wide range of young people who are passionate about multimedia but identified by local authorities as ‘at risk’ of entering the criminal justice system, compromising the safety of others through gang involvement or falling victim themselves to youth violence. Key components from the young people’s feedback have been used to provide a platform of creative and therapeutic provision that enables challenged young people to express their passion and fulfil inner desires while transferring their talents into practical, employable and marketable skills.

Coram delivering Young Citizens’ Training Programme, which will make a positive impact on the lives of 444 16-21-year olds from migrant and refugee backgrounds, enhancing their resilience to overcome the challenges they face and supporting them to make positive lives for themselves in this country. 444 Young Citizens Participants will benefit from peer-led workshops co-produced and delivered by 30 Young Citizens Trainers who will use their experience of overcoming challenges when moving to the UK to help their peers. Workshops will increase young people's emotional wellbeing as well as knowledge of their rights and how to exercise them.

Deafinitely Theatre delivering Deafinitely Youth Company, the only accessible arts activity provided for deaf young people in London. Deafinitely Youth Company is a drama training scheme providing more than 45 workshop, production, work experience and training/development activities each year in London. Demonstrably building the skills and confidence of deaf young people, a severely marginalised group, with minimal access to arts activities. The programme empowers deaf participants to develop vital social skills and confidence, gain qualifications and undertake work experience so they can integrate more fully into mainstream society. Many have gone on to further education or have secured paid work as a result of taking part.

Element delivering Creative Arts Projects and Network with Care Leavers. Element will offer creative projects and an alumni network to care leavers (16-21) across London. The projects will use visual art, performance art and creative writing as a way for participants to explore their strengths, motivations, and identity, and provide the opportunity to get a qualification. The network will offer follow-up support through regular drop ins, trips to cultural events, opportunities through their partners, and paid opportunities with Element. They aim to improve care leavers’ confidence and social skills and engage them with opportunities. This combats isolation, under-confidence, low aspirations and NEET figures, reducing the risk of criminal activity.

Epic ELM delivering KaBOOM - the spirit of searching and experimenting. KaBOOM brings together artists, scientists and play workers and youth workers to create exciting real world connected STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths) activities and includes the commission of individuals/organisations whose STEM practice removes structural barriers and enhances the opportunity for CYP to work on projects for longer periods of time than is traditionally experienced at school.  Examples include plastic fusing, expanding the work of their first project, Aerocene and turning old plastic bags into beautiful fabrics, and a STEM themed citizen science residential.

Free2B Alliance delivering their Free2Talk LGBTQ+ youth service, continuing their valued LGBTQ+ specific service, providing targeted 1:1 and group support to LGBTQ+ young people who experience discrimination and inequality within education, resulting in social exclusion and a negative impact on mental health and emotional well-being. The project will provide a much-needed safe space for each young person. A space where they don’t have to agonise over whether the professional will understand their gender identity or assume their sexuality. A space where they are immediately accepted for who they are - an essential (but so often lacking) ingredient for an effective mentoring relationship.

Gloves Not Gunz delivering Generation Change. Gloves Not Gunz was set up in 2017 with the aim to use the 'power of sport' to engage young people and prevent/divert them away from crime and violence. They deliver a variety of sports enrichment sessions that include education around personal development, life skills and social issues. They currently have 15 part-time members of staff and volunteers that help run the organisation including two committed, experienced Directors with additional expert consultancy from sector experts who support on a pro-bono basis. They run a variety of interventions year wide and engage with upwards of 80 young people a week.

Groundwork London delivering Girl SPACE (Supporting Potential and Achievement on Cossall Estate). Responding to strong local need for a safe space for young women, Girl SPACE will deliver tailored personal development activities to help young women living on/near Cossall Estate to build their resilience, make positive choices, reach their potential, and prevent their social exclusion and involvement in violence/criminal activity. This will be achieved through a mix of co-produced sessions/workshops centred around 3 overarching themes of importance to participants (Mental Wellbeing, Healthy Lifestyles, and Social action); supported by individual achievement coaching/mentoring to help them address personal barriers, explore feelings behind their behaviours, set goals/action plans, and ultimately to fulfil their potential.

GT Scholars delivering The Future Leaders Project. This project will work with 20 boys each year, at risk of permanent exclusion, aged 12-14. The project will use a multi-strategy approach combining enrichment days, skill-building workshops and one-to-one mentoring support. This project will aim to raise each young person’s career aspirations, develop their confidence, increase self-motivation, help them develop skills and strategies to improve their behaviour, and ultimately help them to consistently make better choices going forwards. This will help each young person make a more positive contribution to society and avoid the negative outcomes that have typically been associated with this group.

Hackney Play Association delivering My Space, where young people at risk of involvement in criminal activity will lead an exciting new programme of activities at three adventure playgrounds in Hackney, located in areas of high child poverty and youth violence. Activities will include environmental awareness and site improvements to create their own safe space, positive engagement with police and emergency services, and education and accredited skills development. Young people will lead on all aspects of planning, delivery and evaluation, developing life skills, leadership and increasing aspirations.  They will work in partnership with local youth services to share skills, resources and to maximise opportunities for young people.

Harrow Association of Somali Voluntary Organisations delivering Youth Quake, a unique, localised project aimed at young Black youth who are at risk of exclusion or involvement in crime between the ages of 12 to 21 in the most deprived wards of Harrow. The programme proposes to deliver an in-depth mentoring, engagement, and arts-based diversionary programme rooted in co-production and intergenerational dialogue to move young people from negative influences to improved mental-health and well-being, better relationships with family and peers, as well as fostering greater leadership skills.

Harrow Club W10 delivering Showing Another Way, for young people who have been affected by knife crime will produce a range of short films, performance art and spoken word which will form a presentation workshop that they will deliver in local schools, youth clubs and community centres, in 4 London boroughs, over an 18 month period as part of a conflict resolution training programme. This approach will provide a number of strong benefits that will ensure a strong, accessible and relevant intervention that will reach 500 children and young people aged 10-16. The young people creating and delivering the programme will also gain a number of skills and accreditation.

Hillingdon Autistic Care and Support delivering Social-Wise, which will provide therapeutic group sessions and individual mentoring for autistic young people aged 10 – 18 years, family Support and parent training, using the evidence-based Social Thinking programme. The programme teaches young people to connect behaviour, emotions and consequences, developing self-regulation and social problem-solving.  The project will be delivered by a highly specialist Speech and Language Therapist together with their Youth Workers. The aim of the programme is to improve social relationships and skills, with the long-term impact of better school experiences and reduced risk of exclusion; and reduced risk of becoming either victims or perpetrators of crime.

Iconic Steps delivering Industry Filmmaking, a 3-year training and mentoring programme supporting 90 Young People aged 16-21 from Newham and Lambeth at risk of exclusion to gain personal, social and vocational skills that’ll raise aspirations and enable them to identify pathways and progression into the media industry.

Magpie Dance delivering dancing for healthy minds and bodies. Providing a programme of highly engaging and empowering, fully inclusive dance activities, over three years for young people with learning disabilities aged 10 – 21 who experience significant levels of exclusion due to their disability. Their proposed programme will comprise: three annual summer dance schools run over 4 days, three annual Easter schools run over 3 days and weekly dance classes in Catford running for three 10-week terms per year.

Maiden Lane Community Centre delivering Girls GLOW, which will engage young women living in Camden who are excluded, involved in criminal activity or at high risk of becoming involved. The project will also work with young women who are suffering from the effects of criminal activity. These young women want a place to meet, learn new skills, enjoy activities that interest them and benefit from the support of Youth Workers they trust. Girls GLOW will use the power of creativity to enable young women to explore key topics including self-image and identity, drug and alcohol abuse, gun and knife crime, gang culture, bullying, media influences, well-being, keeping safe, starting secondary school or work and healthy relationships.

MAN&BOY delivering Connecting Families, which will offer a dynamic programme to boys in transition from junior to secondary school who are: at risk of exclusion from education, already excluded from or refusing school, exhibiting challenging behaviour at school and home, experiencing a social communication condition or mental health difficulties, and subject to family breakdown. MAN&BOY uses reflective learning, male family member mentoring and physical challenge activities to develop trust and confidence. MAN&BOY teach positive communication skills, strategies for displaying resilience in difficult circumstances, to develop a growth mind set and aspiration for the future.

National Youth Theatre of Great Britain delivering Skills for Life through Inclusive Drama. Young people with learning disabilities are 10 times more likely to find themselves in custody than their non-disabled peers and represent about 30% of people in custody (ARC 2016 report, funded by the Big Lottery Fund). They are also a group that are much more vulnerable to being manipulated or groomed for criminal purposes. The National Youth Theatre is working with Samuel Rhodes Special School in Islington to develop a model of creative education and employment opportunities to help reduce the risk of involvement in criminal activity among young people with learning disabilities.

Pegasus Opera Company delivering Pegasus Music Mentoring Programme Pegasus, working with 135 young people aged between 11-15 over 3 years who will compose and perform their own operas based on themes that matter to them. All participants will be based in the London Borough of Lambeth and have been identified as at risk of exclusion. This programme will ensure provide enrichment opportunities to develop confidence, resilience, collaborative and employability skills. In each cohort there will be a youth committee who will be giving a budget to aid them in creating these operas whilst all participants work towards an accredited Arts Award qualification awarded through Trinity College.

Playing ON delivering Drilling Diamonds, which will work with We Are Spotlight, to support young people in telling the story of growing up in East London, using lived experience, brand new music and industry quality film, over three 10-week terms and 3 intensive weeks of theatre rehearsal and film making. The result will be a multimedia performance event, acting as a catalyst for youth led discussions, debates and community engagement.

Prospex delivering Prospex Street Team, which will enable us to develop Prospex Street Team's outreach project to include more structured outreach activities, in depth one-to-one support, and skills-based opportunities for "at risk" young people who are not engaging with services. Young people will shape the development and delivery of the work.  Prospex outreach contacted over 96 individual young people last year in their local neighbourhoods, many of whom are at risk as victims or/and are perpetrators of anti-social behaviour/crime/gangs. This continuity of contact is vital to initiate long term behaviour change/improved life chances and to deliver joined up solutions.

The Reasons Why Foundation delivering Young Life Changer, which will offer thirty young people who have been arrested and in police custody a lifeline and opportunity to work with us to change the course of their lives. At this critical moment of their lives they will offer a 12-month holistic programme of personal development, training and mentoring support. They will look to the reasons why they are in their current situation and offer them long-term support to address issues such as their mental health and physical health, behaviours and mindsets, family relationships, housing and employment needs and any specific training they need such as literacy and numeracy.

Salmon Youth Centre in Bermondsey delivering Art Speaks Louder than Words: Expressions of Youth, where young people will create interactive art installations in public places in London to explore themes that are important in their lives, such as youth violence, mental health and exclusion. The art installations will combine visual arts (photography/video, painting, sculpture), dance and music. Those who view the installations will understand young people's experiences better. Families will be involved in creating the installations also. Young people will visit schools and other youth provisions to talk about the installations and increase impact, and the project will attract media attention. The project will be supported by an experienced visual artist who has exhibited globally.

Scarabeus Aerial Theatre delivering Take Flight, which is a three-year inclusive aerial acrobatics skills development programme for young people aged 13-21, with priority given to those with mental health issues, BAME groups and people from low-income households. It enables them to develop inspiring physical skills, using Silks, Cocoons, Ropes, Trapeze, Harness and Chinese pole and creates a safe environment where they can challenge themselves, increasing their confidence and overcoming their fears for a brighter future.

The Screen Film Community delivering Youth Media Hub. The Screen Film Community works with diverse and at-risk young people to provide industry-standard accredited training in Film & TV Production and Games Design & Coding (STEM learning). Their programme operates in the wards of Westminster and Kensington & Chelsea with the highest levels of poverty and unemployment such as Westbourne, Paddington, Harrow Road, Queens Park, Church Street, Dalgarno, and Notting Dale. They deliver training and routes to further education and employment through innovative digital media and STEM-subject courses that appeal directly to the interests of young people.

Smart School Councils who are launching a new civic engagement project, working with 64 young people at risk of exclusion/involvement in criminal activity to increase metacognitive skills, attainment and engagement with school. Participants will form a Communication Team who organise pupil-led meetings and facilitate social action, offering them positive opportunities to fulfil their potential and avoid involvement with criminal activity. The project will build on their existing work in 360 schools internationally, allowing us to offer more targeted engagement with at risk young people in the communities worst affected by youth violence.

South Hampstead and Kilburn Community Partnership delivering Bringing communities together- "It takes a village to raise a child". The project will recruit, train and support a young events team. The events team will organise music, sports, family fun and other events throughout the year, bringing the community together, helping people get to know their neighbours and helping young and old to mix.  Team members will themselves learn new skills and grow their networks. They will also have a chance to gain an accredited qualification and take up shadowing, training or work experience opportunities in related areas, opening up new pathways for the future.

Tender Education & Arts delivering Safe Transitions. The programme will support looked after young people, their foster carers and the professionals that work with them to prevent abusive relationships as they transition out of care. They use an arts-based approach to create safe, engaging and trauma-informed spaces. Young participants will help us to create the adult training, ensuring that the professionals and carers who support them can meet their needs effectively. Transitioning out of care can be a high-risk time for experiencing unhealthy relationships. This evidenced programme will support young people to avoid engagement in violence as victims or perpetrators and will promote safe, healthy relationships.

TransformUK delivering WordFORWARD, which will use creative writing and music production to help at-risk young people explore their emotions. By developing these young people as artists, they aim to give them tools to develop their emotional intelligence and positively deal with their adverse childhood experiences. They believe that the adverse childhood trauma, that has often led to the indicators of risk presented by their young people, actually offers them a crucial advantage to positively transform their lives. By focusing on developing their artistic abilities, they will increase the emotional and social intelligence of their young people and those closest to them. Young people involved will publish a book to inspire other young people to overcome, and triumph, similar challenges.

The Violence Intervention Project delivering Urban therapy outreach work - from custody suites to community streets. The VIP deliver therapeutic outreach support for young people involved in Serious Youth Violence (SYV) and gangs. The aim of their work is to develop therapeutic relationships with vulnerable young people outside of conventional clinical settings.  They believe that helping young people develop an ability to discuss, label and regulate their emotions is fundamental in helping young people live healthy, safe and violence free lives.  They deliver at the point when and where young people decide they need us most and as part of this project they will be on call at Acton Police station every day.

Wac Arts delivering Wac Arts Transition, which is an early intervention programme for vulnerable young people of all abilities, including those at risk of exclusion or involvement in criminal activity. Transition engages those experiencing points of change aged 10-14 through accessible performing arts and digital media activities, which reflect their interests and backgrounds. Young people find their voice to translate their challenges into creative outputs, and develop their communication, social and independence skills, while forming positive relationships with peers and adults. Young people’s cultural identity is supported in a safe and nurturing environment, presenting them with positive role models who reflect their worlds.

Waltham Forest Dyslexia Association tackling disaffection and offending by neurodivergent young people in Waltham Forest. Young neurodivergent people, which includes those who are dyslexic, dyspraxia, ADHD and autistic, face significant additional challenges because their many abilities and differences are not well understood within the mainstream education system. The project will utilise specialist skills and innovative methods to work with teachers in target schools and Pupil Referral Units to motivate this group of young people to succeed. They aim to re-engage young people in danger of disaffection and divert them from offending behaviour. To develop their fundamental skills, self-esteem and confidence and to equip staff to help overcome the challenges faced by these young people.

Youth First delivering Staying Safe in Lewisham, based in 3 of the borough's most deprived neighbourhoods.  It will deliver 39 workshops to over 500 10-14-year olds at risk of exclusion on themes including substance misuse, knife crime, sex and healthy relationships, on-line safety and emotional health and well-being. Young people and youth workers will jointly create content and work with 5 high profile presenters to produce inspiring support materials on a YouTube channel. In phase 2 they will train 25 additional young people and up to 10 youth workers to deliver the programme more widely across Lewisham.

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