Severn Trent Community Fund gives £15,000 to support two Staffordshire-based groups 

21st February 2023

The Severn Trent Community Fund has issued grants totalling over £15,000 to two groups in Staffordshire. 

A £9,000 grant has been provided to the Beyond Youth Project for the creation of an alternative education centre for children struggling in mainstream schools. 

The project will create a new gym fitness and training area by converting an existing building next to the existing Alternative Education Centre. BYP focuses on supporting children who struggle in schools due to behavioural, cultural, mental or physical issues. 

BYP takes children on a three-day-a-week basis and offers mentoring, functional skills, Prince’s Trust education and qualifications, and personal development. Alongside more traditional subjects – such as maths and English – it also teaches nutrition, health and wellbeing, fitness and martial arts. 

Matt Smith, Director at Beyond Youth said: “We believe that we can make a real difference to those children struggling in mainstream school and give them opportunities for a future as they grow up.  Our education centre is located in what is now an empty but developing building, which we intend to create a new gym fitness and training area, a vocational education area for trade skills, music and art, and an office floor with dedicated classrooms, funding will enable us to create these spaces for young vulnerable children to take advantage of and work towards re-integrating back into society and mainstream education. “

A further grant of £6,624 has been awarded to the 7th Lichfield (St Michael’s) Scout Group for a project to expand paddle board offer with more equipment and volunteers to run sessions. 

Operating since 1961, the Scout Group is one of the largest in the country, with 220 young people aged six to fourteen attending its Beaver Colonies, Cub Packs and Scout Troops every week. The Group offers exciting and varied activities which encourage personal development, team building and self-reliance, and each year sees over 1,000 children take part in paddle sports that it runs. 

Richard Taylor, Group Scout Leader, 7th Lichfield (St Michael’s) Scout Group, said: “As well as learning new skills, taking part in a well-run outdoor sporting activity is mood enhancing and can generate an interest in water sports that could last a lifetime.

“We have an excellent relationship with the local Manor Park Sailing Club and we are actively seeking to expand our offer with more equipment and volunteers to run these sessions, including purchase of additional kayaks and stand-up paddle boards to allow us to train more volunteers so that more people can take part in these rewarding activities.” 

Jade Gough, Severn Trent Community Fund Officer, said: “We are really pleased that our independent awards panel selected the Beyond Youth Project and 7th Lichfield Scout Group to receive grant funding through the Community Fund. These are two fantastic organisations that can help to build up young peoples’ personal skills and help them develop. 

“We are always looking for more local projects in the regions in which we work which would benefit from grant funding and would encourage anyone who may be applicable to get in touch.” 

For more information on the Severn Trent Community Fund and to find out how to make an application visit and search for Community Fund