Fundraising: Paul Hamlyn will increase grants

A grant-giver that specialises in funding projects for disadvantaged young people plans to increase the value of its grants programme by up to 66 per cent from next year.

The Paul Hamlyn Foundation, which will award up to £20m in 2007, has created a social justice programme of open grants aimed at organisations working with vulnerable people under 30 in times of transition, such as leaving care or prison.

The programme also includes two special funds: the Fund for Refugee and Asylum Seeker Young People, and the Reading and Libraries Challenge Fund.

"Following a consultation, it was clear the time was right," said a spokesman. "There is a need for a social justice stream, for projects that allow young people in isolated communities to have their voices heard."

The foundation has also introduced an online quick eligibility check for organisations to ensure they are eligible to apply to the fund.

The foundation awarded £12.8m last year to arts and education projects across the country that tackle inequality and disadvantage among young people.

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