Charities across England and Wales will be able to bid for new funds to run programs designed to steer young people away from breaking the law and into positive activities aimed at teaching teamwork , resilience and discipline.
While the number of young people in custody remains at an all-time high, statistics show that around 80% of prolific adult offenders start committing crimes in childhood – with the economic and social costs of recidivism costing taxpayers an estimated $18 billion. pounds per year.
The new funding announced today builds on the government’s work to detect and prevent youth offending earlier than ever before, helping to prevent these young people from becoming involved in crime or anti-social behavior.
Earlier this year, the Deputy Prime Minister announced the biggest funding package in a generation to tackle juvenile delinquency and reduce crime, including £60m for early intervention.
Today’s news also delivers on the commitment made in the Prisons Strategy White Paper – published in December last year – to introduce new early intervention measures to reduce youth crime, ensure street safety and fewer casualties.
Deputy Prime Minister, Lord Chancellor and Justice Secretary Dominic Raab said: “I have seen firsthand how local sports projects can transform the lives of young people from difficult backgrounds, get them off the streets and teach them life skills, including teamwork, rigor and resilience.
“That’s why we’re investing £5million in innovative sports programs across the country. It’s part of our £300million investment to help every council in England and Wales catch and prevent youth crime earlier than ever, making our streets safer.”
Charities and organizations wanting to deliver the sports programs will be able to bid for the money – with hundreds of organizations set to benefit from the funding.
The Department of Justice will work closely with its delivery partner – StreetGames and consortium partners Alliance of Sport in Criminal Justice and Sport for Development Coalition – to oversee the application process and distribution of funding.
Stuart Felce, Director of Sport and Community Safety at StreetGames, said: “We are truly delighted to partner with the Sport for Development Coalition and the Sport in Criminal Justice Alliance to deliver this new ambitious program of the Ministry of Justice.
“These funds are a vote of confidence in the power of sport to provide young people with a positive pathway and help prevent them from falling into the criminal justice system.”
StreetGames and the Department of Justice open the bidding contest today (Friday, November 4). It will last until Monday, December 5.