The Youthscape Project supports and helps disaffected young people from all backgrounds and faiths in Luton.
In 2016 a former flour mill, in the centre of the town, was converted into an amazing modern space for these youngsters and the Connolly Foundation gave £300,000 to assist in this work.
The building was officially opened by the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge last August.
Youthscape is a growing national youth work organisation who also work face to face with young people in Luton.
It was established in 1993 and Chris Curtis, the Chief Executive, was the founding member of staff. The organisation now has 27 paid staff and more than 80 volunteers.
Chris Curtis said: “The Connolly Foundation helped us achieve the largest step forward in our twenty-three year history with the purchase of Bute Mills – our new national training centre and base for our expanding work with Luton teenagers. Not only were they one our most substantial funders – their support and belief in the work we are doing with young people encouraged others to get behind the project.”
Youthscape supports young people facing big issues that have a negative effect on their lives – affecting their education, their emotional well being and their motivation for making the best of their future.
The work concentrates on where the biggest difference can be made to these outcomes – mental health, social and educational disengagement.
Looked after children and child sexual exploitation are its current focus.
However, it is flexible, and can respond quickly to emerging needs or changing culture. It has developed its own version of Google’s innovation process to govern how issues can be indentified and develops the programmes and resources to respond.
Youthscape works with schools, Children’s Services and faith organisations directly through its base at Bute Mills.