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An Inspiring Partnership: Venture Trust and Inspiring Scotland

This is a guest post written by a member of staff at Venture Trust

It’s the small things that really matter… relationships forged through a shared endeavour to help young people transform their lives for the long term.

For the past 10 years, Inspiring Scotland and Venture Trust have been working together to change the lives of some of Scotland’s most disadvantaged young people.

This partnership has supported those struggling with many and complex issues, outside mainstream support and unemployed, or who may have never been in employment. The focus is on an individual’s strengths, equipping them with essential life-skills and building confidence. By tackling a cycle of harm and inequality, vulnerable young people can move away from the margins of society to fulfil their potential.

In the last 10 years of delivering the Inspiring Young Futures programme, Venture Trust has received 2355 referrals, engaged 2115, and supported 1093 young people to achieve a first positive destination of education, training, volunteering or employment.

Venture Trust CEO Amelia Morgan says Inspiring Scotland has enabled the organisation to ensure its work is focused, targeted and impactful.

“Pro bono support and a dedicated team within Inspiring Scotland connecting us with experts – willing and able to help us understand our organisation better and become more effective. Venture Trust has benefited hugely from a whole range of support from business continuity and IT security, to programme development and business development.    

A Performance Advisor has guided us, supported us and challenged us to be bold and to focus on driving impact in our work. It’s not always easy but the honesty makes us better and for that we are very grateful. Being part of a wider family of charities has offered collective insight and voice to the issues facing young people and what we can do to support those struggling most.”

The partnership has given Venture Trust credibility and visibility with other stakeholders. This has led to being able to leverage additional investment – on top of Inspiring Scotland’s £5m the organisation has raised £5m in matched funds.

Being part of the Inspiring Scotland 10-year story means being part of a story where more young people have greater confidence, are clearer and more optimistic about their future, know how to ask for help and have a greater sense of wellbeing and the ability to build positive relationships with themselves and others around them.

Navigating all the challenges in life is not easy, so the focus continues to be on how needs drive behaviours and choices and in supporting young people to overcome setbacks. This can take time; helping young people to build the right foundations and protective factors to succeed for the rest of their lives. Where someone grows up, their family background or previous negative and damaging experiences – does not have to define them.

Looking ahead, there is still much to do, Amelia says.

“There are still 4,000 16-24 year olds unemployed for 12 months or more in Scotland*. They are missing from the workplace and all that potential is yet unrealised. The legacy of the 14-19 Fund is that together we support our young people, we highlight the challenges they face and empower them to share their experiences and together we tackle the inequality and adversity to break the cycle for others.  But mostly we focus on greater compassion, opportunity and enabling everyone to see their potential.”


Read how Cassie is realising her potential with support from Venture Trust and Inspiring Scotland.


*  Scottish Government, Office of the Chief Economic Advisor.

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