Funding boost for violence prevention amid Covid-19 recovery

Community organisations are being invited to apply for a share of £65,000 to support young people at risk of violence as the UK recovers from Covid-19.


Leicestershire’s Violence Reduction Network (VRN) has announced the latest round of its Community Fund which will allocate grants to Voluntary and Community Sector organisations to help prevent violence returning to the streets following the lockdown.


This year’s fund is focussed on re-engaging and supporting vulnerable people as part of a wider Covid-19 recovery effort and aims to build resilience among young people as they transition back into public life and restrictions ease.


A priority for the VRN is to involve and empower grassroots organisations to develop community responses to preventing violence.


The VRN is particularly keen to support projects which work with young people with low school attendance or who are close to exclusion and young people who are not in employment or training.


Grace Strong, VRN Director, said: “One of our key priorities is to work in partnership with communities and provide resources so that communities can play a direct role in preventing violence.


“Covid-19 and the implications it is having for our young people mean that it is even more important for community groups and organisations to be able to provide activities and services both virtually and face-to-face where possible and safe to do so.


“This funding will support that process and increase the opportunities and services that can support young people and help them succeed in the future. We are keen to invest in these groups and work collaboratively with them to develop community responses to preventing violence amongst young people.”


Lord Willy Bach, VRN Board member and Leicestershire’s Police and Crime Commissioner, added: “It is a critical time for the UK as we continue to recover from the coronavirus and its impact on our lives.


“Patterns of public place violence and crime have been disturbed during the pandemic as a result of the lockdown. With restrictions now easing, it is important we do everything possible to prevent violence and knife crime from re-emerging and that means sustaining our intervention work with those most at-risk.”


The VRN is encouraging community organisations to be flexible in their approach and demonstrate plans for adjustment and adaptation as social restrictions change.

Projects should focus on youth violence in public places involving young people up to the age of 25 and concentrate on one or more types of prevention.


This includes primary prevention involving work with young people and communities to prevent violence from occurring in the first place, secondary prevention using early intervention strategies to prevent the progression or escalation of violence and tertiary prevention encompassing work with those already directly affected by violence as victims or perpetrators and helping them to recover.


Grants of up to £5,000 per organisation are available and projects must be delivered before 31 March 2021.


The VRN will only support schemes which are new and do not duplicate what existing partners may be delivering in the area.


The application process launches today on Tuesday 28 July and closes at 11:59pm on 25 August 2020.


For more information and to apply visit: https://www.violencereductionnetwork.co.uk/grants


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