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Receiving an allocation from the Tackling Child Poverty Fund has allowed Dundee and Angus College to work creatively and considerately with young people who previously did not consider college to be an option.

Through its innovative ‘Find Your Future’ project, the College has been able to demonstrate that learning and progression can take many forms, from engaging in soft touchpoints to starting full-time mainstream courses.

Amongst the clear benefits of the project are its offer of flexible provision and wrap-around support, which has empowered young people back into learning. Staff working on the project have also seen a visible increase in overall wellbeing and self-efficacy of participants – young people who had been disempowered and disenfranchised.

The project has created successful partnerships with many public and third sector organisations across Angus and Dundee. This has been a key factor in its ability to reach the young people it was designed to support.

Even through lockdown, staff working on the project were able to work creatively by delivering online opportunities. These included two successful Gaming Academies in partnership with INTO Games and industry experts, Outplay. They also included a weekly Wellbeing Group in partnership with Community Learning & Development and GOGA.

Now that lockdown has lifted, the College is onto its final academy, FYF in the Countryside, equipping another cohort with work-based training and accreditation.

The College is currently awaiting news about its final year of funding, so it can continue to grow what is proving to be a unique and impactful approach to working with young people.

Its future work will be inspired by the amazing feedback from those who have been involved in the ‘Find Your Future’ project so far:

“You made me see differently. You made all my options so clear and now I’m here.”

Young person

“I never would’ve come to college if you hadn’t come to see us in the town. Week 3 and I’m loving it!”

Young person

“The young parents I have spoken to are so excited by what this project can offer them! This provision will really fill a gap for us and our young people.”

Community worker

“This project . . . a light touch service to break down barriers with young people . . . we now see that it is one we have been missing.”

Service manager

Katie Baxter, Learning Engagement Manager, Dundee and Angus College

SFC’s Call for Proposals for the 2021-22 Tackling Child Poverty Delivery Plan has now been published.