Friday, 4 September 2009

Gibson encourages youth groups to cash in

News release
Immediate release

Highlands and Islands SNP MSP Rob Gibson has urged youth groups across the region to help put ill gotten gains to good use.

He was speaking following the opening of the latest round of funding of the Scottish Governments cashback to communities scheme.

The £1 million pound pot of funding has been taken from assets of criminals to reinvest in youth schemes across the country.

The fund is being administered by YouthLink Scotland. Any youth project interested in applying for funding can find guidance and application forms at

Mr Gibson said that groups across the Highlands and Islands should apply....

"Groups throughout the region have already benefited from this funding such as Lybster junior football club and Wick Academy FC. So I would encourage more to make applications as soon as possible, so that they can help make a real difference."

"The vast majority of youth are good people however some go bad for many reasons but if there are well resourced groups which give youngsters an outlet for positive activity then it can only help stop anti-social behavior."

"The deadline for a share of the one million pound funding is fast approaching and I would urge interested organisations to apply."



1. It's easy to apply - there is guidance and application forms at

Included in the assessing panel are young people, so funds are allocated by young people for young people

2. This is part of the Cashback for Communities initiative. CashBack For Communities is a programme of young people's activity funded from assets seized through the Proceeds Of Crime Act 2002. Its main objective is to provide a wide range of positive activities for young people between the ages of 10 to 19 across Scotland.

3. There is a funding pot available that can help increase youth work events and activities in all areas of Scotland. If you work or volunteer in this sector your project could be eligible for this additional support.

4. Case studies can showcase the sort of activities that have been supported already. Below are case studies of two projects, one in Glasgow and one in Edinburgh, that have received CashBack for Communities funding.

Greater Easterhouse Arts Company

Pure Dance NRG is a series of free dance events for young people aged under 18 who live in Glasgow East. Funded by CashBack for Communities, the scheme brings together the biggest dance acts, DJs & MCs to perform live at 12 events. The aim is to bring together young people from communities across Glasgow East to socialise, and have fun - safely.

Hosted by the Greater Easterhouse Arts Company and run in collaboration with local dance DJs, police and youth groups, Pure Dance NRG nights attract between 250 - 350 young people each month.

The CashBack funding has been crucial in not only securing the acts for each event, putting on transport for young people but also allowing youth workers to attend on a Friday evening without having to compromise on their own programme of activity.

Tickets for Pure Dance NRG gigs are only available through youth clubs or street workers in the area. This ensures the safety and enjoyment of everyone at the events - young people will turn up, with their youth worker, feeling confident and reassured that it'll be a great night and there will be no trouble.

6VT Youth Café, Edinburgh (6 Victoria Terrace, EH1 2JL)

The 6VT Youth Cafe has been running for over 15 years and during that time has helped over tens of thousands of young people from all over Edinburgh and surrounding areas. 6VT welcomes any young person from 13 -21 years old, but the majority of attendees are 15 - 18 year old.

The Café runs three evening drop in sessions a week, where young people from a range of different cultures and backgrounds hang out with their friends in a safe and friendly environment, try new activities, learn new things and meet new people.

In addition to drop in sessions comprising activities such as breakdancing lessons, fashion shows and cookery classes, 6VT also offers longer term programmes that are designed specifically for vulnerable young people who may be experiencing problems at home or school, or who have been referred to the Café for offending.

Nine months ago, 6VT Youth Café received 15,000 pounds from CashBack for Communities to enable 12 young people referred to 6VT Youth Café from teaching and support staff to take part in a Horse and Stable Management Project. Run in conjunction with Lasswade Riding School and Oatridge College, the project saw the young people learn to ride, care for the horses and learn about running a stable.

Once a week, the group - which consisted of 10 girls and 2 boys, all aged between 14 and 16 - received a riding lesson, took part in group treks and helped out at the Riding School. Their jobs included mucking out stables, feeding and grooming the horses and learning about the care and welfare of the animals.

At the outset of the project, none of the group had ever been near a horse and for many the thought of sitting on one was terrifying. However just two weeks ago, at the project's final session, each of the 6VT riders galloped and raced along John Muir beach watched by family, friends and carers.

5. The closing date for applications for the latest round of funding is October 31, 2009, but youth organisations that have good project ideas are encouraged to apply as soon as possible.

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