In 2014 the Trustees announced that they would be introducing a new award to support a single project with a larger sum and over a longer period than its standard general grants. The triennial Major Project Award (MPA) offers one cause/charity the opportunity to access funding of up to £225,000 spread over three years to finance a specified project supporting our Charity’s objects, with measurable outcomes.
Here is the story of our MPA awards to date.
In April 2019, our then Senior Warden and now Almoner, Dr Hilary Lindsay, chaired the Major Project Award Panel who distilled down a staggering 23 applications to a short list of six, all of which were then visited by teams of two Trustees. After reporting back their findings to the panel, the three finalists were selected in September 2019: Create, Jamie’s Farm, and Leadership Through Sport & Business.
Each finalist made a presentation to the panel in November 2019 and the panel and chair were unanimous in recommending that the 2020-22 MPA winner should be Create, sponsored by Liverymen Libby Bassett and Tony Cates, for their ‘change:matters’ financial education programme for young carers.
The first year’s funding of £75,000 was allocated in May-June 2019 and work duly began on developing the programme. All was going well until the COVID-19 pandemic struck.
Create mustered all their creativity (which they have in abundance) and focused their attention on moving the programme to an on-line platform which proved challenging.
However, the first wave of courses was rolled out on a trial basis during August 2020.
Initial findings demonstrate that the approval of the course overall, and the improvement in financial literacy and wellbeing experienced by the young carers, appear to have been significant.
Still in its development stage, the course promises to deliver a huge impact on this neglected sector of young people who experience extraordinary levels of responsibility and stress for managing finances, without the financial knowledge to give them the necessary confidence to deal with it.
During this period of uncertainty, Create are working with other delivery agencies to increase the number of carers who can benefit from these on-line courses until such time as they can be safely delivered by Create’s preferred traditional method – face to face.
In 2016 the Trustees, under the chairmanship of the then Junior Warden, John Cardnell, awarded the second of our Major Project Awards to the Open University, proposed by Liveryman Libby Bassett, for their ‘Managing My Money: Young Adults’ project (MMMYA). It was successfully launched on 3rd November 2017 and is still being promoted nationally by the OU.
This financial management course focuses on young people’s financial education needs. The course is primarily targeted at 16 to 18 year olds who are reaching the threshold of financial independence – although the content is also of substantial use to those who have left school and gone on to university or into employment.
It has been wholly sponsored by our Charity and delivered by the Open University Business School’s True Potential PUFin centre, led by Martin Upton, its Director.
Through our support the OU has been able to produce a quality financial learning resource used by thousands and which is now being embedded into the school curriculum. The OU is committed to supporting MMMYA beyond the term of funding by maintaining the course’s integrity online and updating it to respond to legislative changes and ensure accuracy of content.
It was discovered that MyBnk, proposed by Liveryman David Sayer, fitted all the criteria required to be worthy of support for our inaugural Major Project Award.
MyBnk has always strongly supported projects aimed at younger people and encouraging numeracy and literacy. Their ‘Money Twist’ programme selected for support, helped Key Stage 3, 4 and 5 pupils learn about money management, budgeting and banking.
The award granted a total of £200,000 spread over three years. This directly supported over 15,000 young people in Greater London and the West Country, equipping them with real-life money skills through a series of hands-on workshops.
These were delivered in areas where funding could not be afforded by schools, notwithstanding that financial literacy is now a component of the National Curriculum.
MyBnk celebrated its 10th birthday at the close of this funding project in 2016 and has since continued to expand its work in universities and prisons, where young people still demonstrate a lack of understanding of financial management and debt.