The Fund allocates money generated from the VAT on sanitary products to projects that improve the lives of disadvantaged women and girls and is managed by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport.
YMCA was awarded £1,000,861.00 to deliver the Y’s Girls Mentoring programme through YMCAs across England, Wales, Scotland and Ireland. Y’s Girls Mentoring will identify young people at risk of developing mild to moderate mental health issues and match them with a trained community-based volunteer mentor.
The programme is based on YMCA Scotland’s existing successful PlusOne Mentoring programme, focussing on improving mental wellbeing in at-risk girls between eight to fourteen years of age.
Responding to the funding announcement, Kerry Reilly, Chief Executive of YMCA Scotland said:
“We are hugely grateful to have been selected as one of the recipients of the Tampon Tax Fund, the vital means from which will enable us to deliver our Y’s Girls mentoring programme.
“Through a partnership referral network of social workers, schools and the police, Y’s Girls will connect vulnerable young girls aged 8 to 14 with mentors from a range of social and geographical backgrounds. The programme aims to establish 250 mentoring relationships across 10 YMCAs across the UK over a 19-month period from December 2020 until the summer of 2022.
“We know that mental health issues among this age range are rising dramatically, and on top of that consistent and damaging cuts to youth services have left many young people isolated and without essential support.
“Funding from the Tampon Tax Fund provides a much-needed bridge within our youth work, helping to reach young women and girls in their time of need.”
Minister for Civil Society, Baroness Barran, said:
“Vulnerable women and girls need our support more than ever in this difficult year, and these grants will help keep vital services going.
“From helping victims of domestic abuse, to supporting those suffering from mental health problems, this funding will help to directly tackle some of the most serious issues facing women and girls today.”
YMCA is the world’s oldest and largest youth charity, supporting more than 10,000 young people and children every week in Scotland.