Scottish Equity Partners has joined forces with The Wood Foundation to support the development of the Youth & Philanthropy Initiative in Glasgow.

Scottish Equity Partners (SEP) has joined forces with The Wood Foundation to support the development of the Youth & Philanthropy Initiative (YPI Scotland) across Glasgow. Through YPI, young people from across a whole school year group, work in small teams to actively research and understand the big social issues that affect their local community.  In each school the programme culminates with a grand final where the very best teams compete against one another to secure a £3000 Grant for their chosen local charity.

During the 2017/18 academic year 18 Glasgow secondary schools will participate in YPI providing a welcome windfall of £54,000 for local charities. As part of the initiative representatives from SEP have actively engaged in programme delivery.

On Tuesday 6th February, Hutcheson’s Grammar School hosted their 2018 YPI Final which saw the recently rebranded Glasgow’s Golden Generation (GGG) – a charity with a seventy year history in Glasgow focused on alleviating loneliness and isolation for senior citizens across the city – pick up the £3000 award.  Their YPI champions showcased a moving piece of inter-generational work, with the team spending time at GGG’s Fred Paton Day Care Centre where they got to know staff, volunteers and service users.

Amongst the impressive panel of judges on the day, was Andrew Buchan, General Counsel, Scottish Equity Partners. Talking about SEP’s involvement in the YPI programme, Andrew said:

“YPI gives teenagers the chance to learn about philanthropy and support local charities whilst also developing valuable life skills. As a YPI Scotland community partner we are delighted to encourage young people across Glasgow to become responsible citizens and to engage with social issues in their local communities, creating long lasting relationships with the charities they support.  SEP is delighted to be involved with this initiative.  Clearly, a significant amount of work goes in to these presentations and each would have been worthy winnners”.

For many of the young people involved in YPI, the charities they choose are linked to personal experience.  For Amy Miller, one of the winning S3 pupils, this was certainly the case:

“In my family we experienced first-hand the impact that loneliness and dementia can have on a loved one.  The support of organisations like GGG made such a difference to my Great-Granny during her later life.  As a team we’ve had an incredible YPI experience, and securing this money is the best reward we could all ever wish for.”

Hutcheson’s Grammar School as been involved with YPI for seven years now.  Reflecting on the ongoing development of of the programme within the school, Colin Gambles, Rector remarked:

“YPI provides a wonderful avenue to motivate the young people of Scotland to engage with local and national charities.  They find the unusual combination of competition and charity irresistible and the possibility of winning £3000 for a venture close to their heart to be truly stimulating. It is brilliant to see the children at Hutchesons’ mature and develop their communication and team-building skills as they prepare for and make their presentations to a panel of judges.”

Commenting on the Hutcheson’s Grammar School’s YPI Final and Scottish Equity Partners involvement, Sir Ian Wood, Chairman of The Wood Foundation said:

“The Wood Foundation is delighted to be collaborating with Scottish Equity Partners in support of the sustained growth and development of YPI Scotland across Glasgow.  Over the last 10 years we have established a number of strong partnerships with likeminded funding partners who support programme growth and sustainability, and we look forward to working closely alongside the team at SEP.”

Beyond the grants awarded to local charities via YPI, the programme most significantly impacts upon young people, providing a valuable experience of philanthropy and community action.  Well done to all the students involved in Hutcheson’s Grammar School’s YPI Final this year and in particular to Rosalind, Amy, Kate, Andrew and Alistair, who made such a compelling presentation on behalf of Glasgow’s Golden Generation.”

Over the last decade the YPI programme has grown and developed across Scotland.  During the 2017/18 academic year alone, 230 Scottish secondary schools will participate in YPI.  This constitutes 31,000 participating students with collective responsibility for awarding £690,000 to small, local charities throughout Scotland.

Lynsey Neilson, Parntership Manager at Glasgow’s Golden Generation added:

“The team showcased precisely how young people can actively support and enrich the work of local charities, and play such a positive role within their local community. The funding secured will now allow us to purchase a long-needed minibus to support our service users for many years to come.”