YouthBank was launched in 1999 to enable young people to become grant-makers.
The project started with 6 pilot projects in Bradford, Bristol, the Highlands and islands, Northern Ireland, Tower Hamlets and Tyne & Wear. Tudor Trust and Esmee Fairbairn Foundation provided most of the funding.
The initiative was led by a consortium assembled by CIVA, which included British Youth Council, Changemakers, Community Foundation Network, National Youth Agency and Prince’s Trust.
Through the project young people are given full responsibility for developing policy and priorities for their foundation, promoting it to potential grant-seekers, receiving and assessing applications, deciding grants and being accountable for their decisions.
In 2002, the programme received a development grant from the National Lottery’s Community Fund to help it develop from the pilot stage into a national programme.Since then YouthBank has been supported with major grants from Comic Relief, the Football Foundation, the Department for Education and Skills, and has become a delivery partner for the Big Lottery Fund’s young people’s grants programme.
Today, there are approximately 70 YouthBanks around the UK, and the programme is led by a Board which consists entirely of young people, with administrative support being provided by the National Youth Agency.
For more information visit www.youthbank.org.uk
YouthBank internationally: the idea of YouthBank has attracted interest from around the world, and there are now YouthBank programmes in Germany, Kenya, the Balkans, Bangladesh and India.
To find out about YouthBank programmes that have started in countries around the world, go to www.youthbank.org.uk and download the International Golden Rules for starting a YouthBank.