Largest Ever Grants Made by the National Express Foundation to Support Young People in the Black Country

27 Apr 2018

Published in: Member News

The National Express Foundation, a charity that helps disadvantaged young people, has today announced a total of £242,760 in community grant and educational bursary funding awards to support local young people across the Black Country, Birmingham and Kent.

Compared to last year, the Foundation has quadrupled the amount of funding to support young people in the Black Country, with £125,260 being donated to groups and universities across the region.

Since it was launched in 2012, Foundation funding has already helped over 14,000 young people. This year's funding is expected to benefit a further 2,000 young people by supporting them with the cost of their studies and also helping groups to deliver educational and developmental activities for youth in the community.

Essex Avenue Community Tenants and Residents Association in West Bromwich have secured five years of funding worth £20,000 to support a calendar of activities including career support services, community cohesion events, crime prevention strategies and social engagement evenings.

Edna Dunn from Essex Avenue Community Tenants and Residents Association, said: "On behalf of our association and the tenants and residents we represent, we would like to extend our overwhelming gratitude to the National Express Foundation for supporting the important work of this association and for believing in us.

"The funding support means that we have the opportunity to acquire the resources to support our young people to become better citizens, have better career aspirations and to deter them from antisocial behaviours through our projects."

New Life Resource Centre in Walsall secured a £10,000 grant to run an in-school intervention project for 30 young people who have been excluded or who are at risk of exclusion.

Elizabeth Eze from New Life Resource Centre CIC, said: "We are very grateful for this opportunity to work with the National Express Foundation. The funding will make a great difference to the delivery of our work."

Anthony Vigor, Chairman of the National Express Foundation, said: "We are delighted to announce the National Express Foundation funding awards for 2018. Over £240,000 of funding will help deliver even more positive and developmental activities for local young people and help those who might not otherwise be able to continue with their studies in further and higher education.

"We are very proud of the support we've been able to provide for young people in the communities that we serve and we look forward to working with this year's grant recipients to develop the skills and activities that will help local young people succeed in life."

£160,260 of the total funding has been awarded to 14 community groups across the Black Country, Birmingham and Kent.

Aston University in Birmingham has also secured a new £10,000 bursary to support 20 students with living expenses whilst undertaking unpaid healthcare placements. This is in addition to Aston's final instalment of a previous three-year bursary to support 30 young unpaid adult carers during their studies.

The full list of community groups to benefit from the Foundation's community grant funding in 2018 are:

  • Balsall Heath CATS, Birmingham: £5,000
  • Cannon Street Memorial Baptist Church, Birmingham: £10,000
  • Essex Avenue Community Tenants and Residents Association, West Bromwich: £20,000 *over 5 years
  • Heart and Soul Community CIC, Wolverhampton: £10,000
  • Gospel Oak Community Centre, Birmingham: £10,000
  • Kids In Communication, Walsall and Wolverhampton: £20,000
  • New Heights Warren Farm Community Project, Birmingham: £5,000
  • New Life Resource Centre CIC, Walsall: £10,000
  • Sheppey Matters, Kent: £10,000
  • Smethwick Youth and Community Centre, Smethwick: £10,260
  • Tara Martins Community Project: £10,000
  • The Vine Trust Walsall, Walsall: £20,000
  • The Wildlife Trust for Birmingham and the Black Country, Birmingham: £10,000
  • Walsall Creative Factory CIC, Walsall: £10,000

Five other colleges and universities receiving the second and third year installments of their annual bursaries are Birmingham City University, Coventry University, University of Warwick, University of Wolverhampton and Walsall College.

Three community groups are also receiving a combined £12,500 in their final year instalments of previous two and three year grants. These are Olio Hub in Darlaston, Lee Chapel North Helping Hands in Basildon, and Holding On Letting Go in Kent.

For full details of the respective projects and bursary programmes supported by Foundation funding this year please visit

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