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£108 million across England to tackle youth unemployment

The New Year is looking a lot brighter for young jobseekers across England as the Big Lottery Fund today (Wednesday) announces 21 youth unemployment hotspots are receiving their share of its £108m youth unemployment initiative, Talent Match.

The news comes as the latest job figures are released today by the Office for National Statistics.

The Big Lottery Fund, the largest distributor of good causes money from the National Lottery, launched Talent Match, a national scheme designed by young people for young people, with the aim of helping those aged 18-24 who are struggling the most to find career opportunities.

The scheme brings together 21 partnerships that include employers, councils and experienced charities, such as The Prince’s Trust, that will now use their grants to focus on local solutions to a nationwide problem that threatens serious consequences for an entire generation of young people as well as the wider economy. The ACEVO Commission on Youth Unemployment has estimated that the issue will cost £28billion over the next decade.

Talent Match projects are led by a cross-sector partnership with a key focus on employers, particularly from the private sector, to ensure that it meets local needs and young people are given opportunities get the skills to find employment.

Nat Sloane, England Chair of the Big Lottery Fund, said: ‘Youth unemployment is an issue that threatens the hopes of an entire generation as well as our whole economic wellbeing. Talent Match promises to help the very hardest to reach young people to make the most of their skills and ambitions, not just as an end goal, but by giving them a say in how the programme itself is designed and put into practice.

‘The funding announced today is a key step on a very exciting journey as it means the real work can now begin. By bringing together employers and the knowledge of key charities, Talent Match will help ensure today’s young people have the maximum help and support they need to find a fulfilling and rewarding career.’

The funding awards announced today are:

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To arrange media interviews, please contact Stuart Gannon in the Big Lottery Fund press office on 0207 211 1818.

Big Lottery Fund Press Office: 020 7211 1888

Out of hours media contact: 07867 500 572

If you have a hearing or speech impairment you can contact us using Text Relay at 18001 plus 0191 376 1776

Full details of the Big Lottery Fund programmes and grant awards are available on the website:www.biglotteryfund.org.uk

Ask BIG a question here: http://ask.biglotteryfund.org.uk

Follow BIG on Twitter: www.twitter.com/BigLotteryFund #BIGlf

Find BIG on facebook: www.facebook.com/BigLotteryFund

Notes to editors

  • The Big Lottery Fund, the largest distributor of National Lottery good cause funding, is responsible for giving out 40% of the money raised for good causes by the National Lottery.
  • The Fund is committed to bringing real improvements to communities and the lives of people most in need and has been rolling out grants to health, education, environment and charitable causes across the UK. Since its inception in 2004 BIG has awarded close to £6bn.
  • The Fund was formally established by Parliament on 1 December 2006.
  • In the year ending 31 March 2013, 28% of total National Lottery revenue was returned to the Good Causes
  • Since the National Lottery began in 1994, over £30 billion has now been raised and more than 400,000 grants awarded across arts, sport, heritage, charities, health, education and the environment.
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