UK Youth wins a National CSR Award

 

We are very pleased to announce that we have been crowned the winners of the Best Individual Community Project award at the National CSR Awards for our partnership with Microsoft.

 

Since 2014 the partnership has engaged over 17,000 young people with digital opportunities, through the creation of Microsoft Youth Hubs across the country and the launch of a new coding programme, Generation Code.

 

The partnership was formed after we discovered that many under 18s in the UK were excluded from study or social uses of IT by lack of resources at home. This reduced exposure to technology limited their general skills in IT and put them at a disadvantage in education and employment - reducing their life chances.

 

We, along with Microsoft, recognised the need for supported access to IT outside of schools to inspire young people beyond the outdated curriculum. Together we created a network of Microsoft Youth Hubs across the UK to help young people access high-quality services in their local community. Our members were able to apply for funding to invest in equipment and youth workers were trained to help support peer-led digital skills. 

 

Over half of the young people who attended one of our Microsoft Youth Hubs were limited to accessing IT elsewhere. During the initiative, young people reported a 90% improvement in technology skills, 87% felt more confident to pursue a digital career and 88% showed improvements in key life skills including motivation, responsibility and resilience.

 

After the success of our hubs, in 2016 we expanded the partnership to create Generation Code – our new coding programme providing training and resources to inspire young people to get creative, get connected and get coding. Almost 10,000 young people from across the UK have already taken part in Generation Code. Of these 83% of had never coded before and 71% were from the most deprived areas of the UK. Through Generation Code young people’s skills and attitudes towards coding significantly improved - in particular, females under 15 showed the greatest increase.

 

In addition to our digital skills programmes, Microsoft has supported our wider work raising over £200,000 and donating thousands of volunteering hours supporting our own digital strategy and upkeep of our outdoor learning centre, Avon Tyrrell.

 

We want to thank Microsoft for all their support in helping to empower young people to build bright futures, whatever their background or circumstance. 

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