New ‘Change Something Fund’ judging panel announced
01 October 2018
A new judging panel made up of 13-24 year olds who will take decisions on the funding of young people’s projects throughout the Derry City and Strabane District Council area has been announced.
Council and the Big Lottery Fund have come together and are investing £100,000 in the new ‘Change Something’ project in the run up to ‘Youth 19’ – a year dedicated to young people in the North West.
The ‘Change Something Fund’ – delivered by Community Foundation NI through the Acorn Fund – is one of a series of opportunities for young people to bring their hopes and aspirations to life during Youth 19.
A total of £100,000 is available in the fund where grants from £500 to £3,000 will be available to young people aged 13-24 who submit applications.
‘Change Something’ activities can be any project or initiative that is important to young people and will make a difference in their local community.
Full training will now be provided to the 14 members of the new ‘Change Something’ judging panel (8 from the under 18s category 6 from the over 18s) and hours spent on the project will count towards the Millennium Volunteer Award. After training, the first of two open calls for funding applications will be made by the panel for young people aged 13-24 throughout the city and district to apply for grants.
Mayor of Derry City and Strabane District Council, Cllr John Boyle said: “It has been great to meet up with members of the new ‘Change Something’ judging panel and congratulate them on their successful applications.
“This is a very worthwhile project which is allowing young people to take a lead role in bringing positive change to their community.
“Indeed, it not only offers valuable experience to the young people who have been selected to manage and judge the fund – but will also allow young people throughout the city and district to take ownership of Youth 19 by turning their proposals into reality.
“Importantly, the ‘Change Something’ project also represents an amazing opportunity to promote one of Derry & Strabane’s greatest strengths – its young people!”
Joanne McDowell, Big Lottery Fund NI Director, said: “I’m delighted to have had the chance to meet some of the young people selected for the new ‘Change Something’ judging panel in person – and to be joining up with Derry City and Strabane District Council to fund this fantastic initiative.
“We’re already putting people in the lead in communities across Northern Ireland, and the Change Something Fund allows us to do that with young people in the North West.
“Real change happens when people have a say in the decisions affecting their lives. We’re really excited to see how National Lottery funding will support young people to be the change they want to see in their communities.”
Shauna Kelpie, Community Foundation for Northern Ireland's Acorn Fund Development and Support Officer added: “I would like to congratulate all of the members of the newly selected ‘Change Something’ judging panel who should be very proud of themselves today! Indeed, all of the members of the new judging panel will be at the heart of plans to help other young people change something important and make a positive impact in their local areas. We’ve been supporting communities in the North West since 2014 and are looking forward to using our local knowledge and expertise to help put young people in the lead on this exciting project.”
Matthew Devine from the under 18s category, said: “I’m thrilled to join the new ‘Change Something’ judging panel.
“Indeed, this fund is a great opportunity for young people to show the positive things they do within their community.
“I’m also looking forward to hearing all of the brilliant ideas and seeing the submissions from young people throughout the council area!
“With young people now making the funding decisions, it means this money will definitely have an impact on us. It’s something our community needs and will definitely make a positive change”.
Alannah Furlong from the over 18s category added: “I’m delighted to have been selected to join the new ‘Change Something’ judging panel. I’m also really excited about the new projects and activities which will be introduced as a result of young people throughout the city and district applying for grants to the fund. Indeed, from my own personal experience, I know so many young people who are passionate about their local community and want to make a difference!”
For further information and updates on the new Change Something Fund visit www.derrystrabane.com/changesomething