Devon’s remaining youth services to receive £20k boost

County Hall in Exeter.

County Hall in Exeter. - Credit: Archant

Devon’s youth service is to receive £20,000 in Government cash as part of a project to transform how it is run in the future.

Whitehall has this week confirmed that Devon County Council’s remaining youth services will be part of its ‘delivering differently for young people programme’.

This comes after Devon County Council (DCC) agreed last year to set up an independent, not-for-profit enterprise to run the youth service, as a way of protecting it from further budget cuts.

However, the scheme will only benefit DCC’s eight remaining ‘youth hubs’ – the closest to Sidmouth and Ottery St Mary being Exmouth.

The £20,000 from the Cabinet Office will be used to help establish the enterprise, and will be made available to DCC in the coming months.

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The enterprise will employ the service’s current youth workers who will continue running the service for young people and their communities.

And because it is being operated as a not-for-profit organisation, it will have access to funding currently inaccessible to council services and departments - and be less reliant on council budgets.

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Councillor Barry Parsons, DCC’s youth service boss, said: “This is excellent news from the Cabinet Office.

“This will give a much welcomed boost for young people, as well as to youth workers involved with the service.

“It’s also a great bonus for the county council to be able to show the high value placed on this service, despite the budget cuts we’re suffering.

“We want the service to have firmer footing that is less affected by the constraints of Council funding.

“We’re confident that this is the best way to protect the service’s future for young people, while ensuring that the staff, who are already known within their communities, continue to provide the service.”

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