National Express has invited applications from community groups for a share of a funding pot, equal to £200,000, being made available to young people in the West Midlands.
The operator says the money, made available through the National Express Foundation, is to make up for “time lost during the pandemic” in the delivery of community services which support young people. Such services were suspended or moved online, and the Foundation now wants to support initiatives and activities that play a role in helping young people “succeed in life”.
It highlights the impact it has had on young people with special needs, many of whom rely on face-to-face support. Applications which address the specific needs of those young people are “especially welcome,” it adds.
The process for community group applications will involve two stages. First, groups are asked to provide a single paragraph setting out the proposed activity. The application form deadline is 29 October.
Applications will be assessed, and “those which are considered most likely to succeed” will be invited to submit a further, more detailed application on 5 November to be completed by 19 November.
“The pandemic has presented so many challenges to all of us,” says James Donnan, Foundation General Manager. “For young people it has even been harder as they have missed out on so many things they would normally have done, and the experiences which shape their lives.
“We want to support community groups that can help young people gain the qualifications they need, to build the skills that will help them get jobs, and to help them develop constructive social networks outside of education or work.”
Full details of the respective projects that can be supported by Foundation funding this year are available at www.nationalexpressgroup.com/foundation