Grant of £90,000 to help Swindon young people

By Barrie Hudson - 24 June 2021

CommunityBusinessSocial Enterprise

Swindon’s Platform Project has been awarded a £90,000 grant from Paul Hamlyn Foundation’s Youth Fund.

  • Platform Project founder Sadie Sharp

    Platform Project founder Sadie Sharp

It will support the organisation’s work with young people at risk of unemployment. 

The money will be given to the project over three years and will help its work supporting young people who are struggling to find their way in the world. 

The project has so far helped more than 100 young people in this way. 

Platform Project founder Sadie Sharp said: “This funding allows us to increase the hours of our management staff to support more young people over time. 

"We plan to take what we do and turn it into a scalable model with a number of different products and services that we can provide to other agencies such as schools and other youth development agencies so they can benefit from our experiences.”

The Platform Project, based in Dorcan, is now in its fourth year and is a social enterprise running developmental internships to help prepare young people aged 16-21 for the work environment and take their next steps into a career.

Over the last four years 89 percent of young people within the project have moved into work, self-employment or staying in education, which is a success rate higher than the industry standard.

Ms Sharp added: “The team at the Paul Hamlyn Foundation really supported our innovative approach of using practical, hands-on, youth led business experiences as a way of effectively developing young people. 

"They wanted to support our vision of scaling as a social franchise, aiming to recreate our model in other towns and cities over the coming years, helping to reduce the number of young people who are NEETs - not in education, employment or training.” 

Kate Hitchcock, grants manager at the Paul Hamlyn Foundation, said: “The pandemic has had a disproportionate impact on young people’s wellbeing and expectations for the future.  

"The Platform Project supports and empowers young people to develop confidence and employability skills – with a key focus on entrepreneurship. 

"This grant through our Youth Fund will support The Platform Project to expand their capacity and reach to help more young people to realise their potential. We look forward to learning alongside them.”

The Platform Project's website is

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