Pay it Forward grants

HeadStart want to give young people (aged 10-16) the opportunity to help others, something which can also have a positive effect on their own emotional wellbeing. Their Pay it Forward project should aim to improve the emotional health and wellbeing of other people around them, whether that be where they live, at school, at a club or at another community organisation.

A useful definition of emotional wellbeing is offered by the Mental Health Foundation: ‘A positive sense of wellbeing enables an individual to be able to function in society and meet the demands of everyday life.’ Emotional health is about being happy, self-confident, self- aware, and resilient. People who are emotionally healthy are able to cope with life’s challenges and recover from setbacks.

How the fund can help

Each group of young people can apply from £250 up to £1,000. Young people need not feel they must apply for the highest amount if a smaller amount is sufficient for the project they wish to run. £1,000 is the maximum amount any one group of young people may apply for. When considering applications, young people from Speak Out @ HeadStart will decide on whether the amount asked for reflects the proposed project and may offer a grant of a smaller amount to the applicants.

You can download the Pay It Forward poster (PDF, 2.8 MB) to display in your setting and encourage more young people to apply.

In previous years, successful Pay it Forward projects have included a range of activities. For example, a school in Ashford used the grant to create a beautiful sensory garden which has many uses. Students, staff and visitors to the school use the garden for somewhere to relax and reflect, a place for learning about the world around us and a space where new hobbies and interests are nurtured.

The aim of each project should be to improve the emotional health and wellbeing of young people in your community, so we are open to all ideas which fit this brief.

Who can apply

Anyone aged 10-16 living in any Kent district can apply for up to £1,000 to carry out a project in their local community (residential, school, club, etc.) to improve the emotional wellbeing of others. All applicants must be working as part of a group of a minimum of 2 young people.

A trusted adult can assist young people with the application, especially within the ‘eligibility’ section, but it should be completed in the words of the young people themselves.

Organisations can apply more than once for separate projects, as they are assessed individually.

Apply for a Pay it Forward grant

Apply now

If you have any questions about the grant, contact Liz Luck (Project Coordinator for HeadStart Kent) by email at [email protected].