£19m seized from criminals awarded to youth projects

Twenty-four organisations across Scotland are sharing in the CashBack for Communities funding.

Projects for disadvantaged young people are to share £19m seized from criminals.

Twenty-four organisations have been awarded funding in the latest round of payouts from the CashBack for Communities scheme which reinvests criminal assets into community projects.

They include the Eden Court arts project in Inverness, and the Mayfield and Easthouses Youth 2000 Project, which will work closely with young people from areas of deprivation to provide them with opportunities.

Basketball Scotland, Barnardo’s, Celtic Football Club Foundation, the National Autistic Society, Rangers Charity Foundation, SFA, and Action For Children are also among those receiving funding.

Justice secretary Humza Yousaf said: “CashBack is a unique and potentially life-transforming programme that helps expand young people’s horizons and supports them to realise their ambitions and reach their full potential.

“This phase of CashBack has a particular focus on projects that support young people and communities most affected by crime.

“We are working hard to tackle the root causes of crime and disorder through early intervention and to ensure those affected have the support in place to steer them away from criminal or antisocial behaviour.

“Since the programme began in 2008, we have delivered over two-and-a-half million activities and opportunities for young people across Scotland and I am delighted that many further young people will be supported and inspired over the next three years.”

The latest round of funding awards takes the total investment in the programme since its launch to more than £110m.

Lyndsey Ritchie, youthwork coordinator for Mayfield and Easthouses Youth 2000 project, welcomed the funding.

She said: “We are absolutely delighted to be a new partner in the CashBack Phase 5 funding. Support to address youth offending and anti-social behaviour has always been at the heart of our work.

“Development of our 180 service has been enhanced by previous phases of CashBack funding but news of an award under CashBack Phase 5 has given our project the best possible start to 2020.

“We can now plan ahead with the young people and community stakeholders in the knowledge that this service, the only one of its kind in the authority, has been secured for the next three years – a luxury in this challenging financial climate.”

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