Fundraising: Charity will fund youth volunteers

A charity set up to implement the recommendations of the Russell Commission has announced its first small grants round.

The as yet unnamed charity is being set up to fund volunteering opportunities for young people and is expected to be up and running by April 2006.

The report from the Russell Commission suggested a number of ways to engage a million new young people in volunteering and community action over the next five years.

The first grants round - £600,000 from the Home Office - will fund preparatory work that will lay the foundations for the new charity. It aims to fund projects in two areas. The first will develop volunteer-involving strategies and best practice examples.

The second will encourage volunteer-involving organisations to reach out to new groups of young volunteers, particularly disabled people, faith groups, those without qualifications and those from black and minority ethnic groups.

A further £400,000 will go to youth and volunteering umbrella organisations that are being approached by the Russell Commission.

Ian Russell, head of the commission, said: "The grants will enable voluntary organisations to inform the work of the new charity."

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