Headstart Action

Headstart Action - Request for Proposals

What is Headstart Action?

HeadStart Action is a personal and social development programme for young people who are at risk of becoming not in education, employment or training (NEET). The programme was piloted in Southwark during March 2018 and is a partnership between The Challenge, the Mayor of London and Lendlease. HeadStart Action uses social action and employer encounters to engage and inspire young people, giving them the skills, experience and connections they need to get ahead in the world of work.

HeadStart Action - Request for Proposals  

The Mayor of London's new £45m Young Londoners Fund (YLF) will help children and young people to fulfil their potential, particularly those at risk of getting caught up in crime. It will support a range of education, sport, cultural and other activities for children and young people. As part of the YLF, The Challenge and Team London are inviting experienced youth organisations in London to apply for funding to deliver HeadStart Action. A total of £200,000 is available to deliver five HeadStart Action projects during 2018-19.

Grants of up to £40,000 per project are on offer to community groups, small charities and voluntary sector organisations in London to deliver the programme in their area. We welcome applicants who apply to deliver the programme in multiple areas, however, you must demonstrate a track record of local delivery and an understanding of local needs and challenges. You should also have the necessary partnerships to engage local young people who are at risk of becoming NEET.

Activities should be delivered in Southwark, Newham, Lambeth, Haringey, Tower Hamlets, Croydon, Westminster, Hackney, Brent or Lewisham. These boroughs have been identified as focus boroughs by the Mayor’s Office for Policing & Crime (MOPAC).

Detailed guidance is given in our Request for Proposals document. Please ensure your proposal fits the fund criteria before applying.

We will fund projects which:

  • Support at least 85 young people to take part in the social action, whilst gaining the skills, experience and connections to get ahead in the workplace.
  • Support young people who are at greater risk of failing to make a successful transition from school (or alternative education setting) into employment or higher education, with a focus on young people aged 14-18.
  • Demonstrate creative and experimental ways of engaging this group of young people in social action and volunteering, tackling barriers and challenges to engagement.
  • Demonstrate how you will achieve the programme’s outcomes, including young people:
    • Feeling more motivated and engaged at school
    • Having a more positive sense of who they are and what they can achieve
    • Feeling more connected with, and trusting of, people from different backgrounds in their local community
    • Developing the skills and critical character traits needed to make a positive transition into further education or the world of work
  • Support young people to strengthen their skills and employability through a series of interactive, professional workshops, with at least one workshop to be co-delivered with a corporate partner, and an interview for an appealing, engaging work experience opportunity with a corporate partner.

Projects should be completed by the end of November 2019. The deadline for applications is Friday, 7 September 2018 (by 23:59)

For any questions about the fund, please email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or check out our FAQs.

To apply, please follow all guidelines laid out in the Request for Proposals.