FUNDRAISING NEWS: Lottery fund hands out £5m to social groups

CLAIRE SAMES

Charities involved in social and medical research as well as those tackling poverty have received £5 million from the National Lottery.

A total of 23 charities have benefited from the grants, which has been distributed by the Community Fund and split into two cash pots, with £3 million contributing towards alleviating poverty and disadvantage and £2 million being awarded to social and medical research projects.

The largest grant has been awarded to the Prince's Trust, which has received £883,242. The money has enabled the trust to launch a project called Soundlive.

This aims to help the poorest and most disadvantaged people aged between 18 and 25 to realise they have worthwhile abilities through music including playing the guitar, drums, decks and vocal skills.

The trust will run 42 week-long courses across the country over the next two years for participants not in full-time education.

Another £82,642 has gone to Smooth Ride Guides to compile a travel guide to France aimed at wheelchair users and their carers.

From the £2 million research pool, a grant of £152,238 has been given to the Children's Society to fund a study that will look at ways of reducing the number of young black people in custody.

The children's charity, which will work in partnership with the University of Central England in Birmingham, will study a group of 80 young black people who have been involved with the police.

Mike Akerewusi, the trust manager at the Children's Society, said: "We want to prevent young people from getting involved with the courts and, ultimately, we would like to encourage those who have been in trouble to become mentors for their peer groups."

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