Impact of the Rural Action Fund

The Youth Scotland Rural Action Fund has been a real success and demonstrates the impact that small amounts of funding can have when youth groups are able to meet their own identified needs.

The need

Approximately 1/3 of our member groups are in rural and remote rural communities and these groups are disproportionately affected by reductions in funding for universal youth work. 

The difference we wanted to make

In setting up the Rural Action Fund, Youth Scotland wanted to make it easier for rural youth groups to access small amounts of funding which could be used on what was really needed for young people in their communities. It was about:

  • removing barriers to funding for groups that are reliant on volunteers and have limited capacity to apply for funds;
  • removing the need to create new projects or services;
  • being flexible in supporting the groups;
  • reaching youth groups that other funders are unable to reach; and
  • providing opportunities for young people to have fun and enjoyable youth work experiences in their local communities and beyond.

In supporting Youth Scotland, The Robertson Trust recognised the need for funding universal youth work and the specific needs of rural communities. The Rural Action Fund was also intended to make a difference for the Trust in being able to reach small community-based youth groups for whom it is unable to directly fund.

Support for groups

Over the year our support for groups has delivered on three key areas:

  1. increasing awareness of the Rural Action Fund and supporting groups to apply;
  2. Being responsive and flexible to groups needs in changing circumstances once funding has been awarded;
  3. Increasing awareness of the wider range of our training and capacity-building support, including supporting non-member groups to become members.

How the Rural Action Fund made a difference

Over the course of just one year, the Rural Action Fund 

  • 3,176 young people reached
  • £28,872 funding to 55 projects
  • 478 people volunteering over 5,700 hours

Download the full report below.

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