Minister for Civil Society, Baroness Barran, has confirmed the government will deliver the £500m fund aimed at supporting youth services.
Launched in September 2019 in response to concerns about rising levels of youth violence, the scheme was established with then Chancellor, Sajid Javid, suggested the funds would be used to “help build 60 new youth centres across the country, refurbish around 360 existing youth facilities, and provide over 100 mobile facilities for harder to reach areas”. So far just £16.5m in post-pandemic support and £30m of capital funding has been forthcoming.
In a recent webinar with youth work leaders, Barran confirmed that the Youth Investment Fund (YIF) remains a manifesto commitment though acknowledged implementation delays caused by the COVID 19 pandemic.
She said “The reason for the delay is that the aim of the fund is to support and drive innovation in the youth sector and we felt it was impossible to expect people to innovate at the moment”. “There’s lots of rumours going around… but it remains a government commitment to deliver on the YIF”.