The investment supports the aims of the #iwill campaign to increase the number of young people taking part in social action, through activities such as campaigning, fundraising and volunteering. All of which make a positive difference to communities while developing young people’s skills. The #iwill fund is made possible thanks to £40 million joint investment from the National Lottery and the Department of Digital, Culture, Media and Sport to support young people’s access high-quality social action opportunities. Spirit of 2012 has committed £1m to the opportunity as a match funder and is managing the grant on behalf of the partnership.

This project is part of Spirit’s commitment to mark the 2018 anniversary of women’s suffrage by funding a number of projects which address the challenges affecting women and girls today and address the worryingly low levels of wellbeing amongst young women and girls in the UK. 

Debbie Lye, Spirit of 2012 Chief Executive, said: “As we approach the centenary of women getting the right to vote, we know only too well that women and girls in England still face many formidable challenges. We’re delighted that Spirit is able to invest £1 million as match-funding alongside the #iwill fund to enable young women to take the lead in addressing some of these challenges in their own communities.”

Gemma Bull, England Director at the Big Lottery Fund, said: “This new partnership with Spirit of 2012, as part of the #iwill fund, provides an exciting opportunity to support young people to develop their skills and confidence. Working with partners and their networks we can reach more young people, enabling them to take the lead in creating new social action opportunities that benefit themselves and their local communities.”

The outcomes the grant will address include:

    • Providing a cohort of girls and young women with positive and meaningful social action opportunities to bring about change for other girls in their community, and the wider community as a whole
    • Enabling girls and young women to have a voice and understand how they can change and influence things in their community
    • Empowering girls to engage in activities in inclusive environment that fosters feelings of competence, confidence and connectedness to others.