New Dudgeon Community Fund initiative to enable STEM skills and employability

Dudgeon Community Fund

The Dudgeon Community Fund has introduced a new pilot funding opportunity – the Dudgeon STEM Skills and Employability Fund for Younger People - aimed at supporting groups of younger people in the Great Yarmouth, North Norfolk and Breckland regions of Norfolk to achieve their STEM skills and employability aspirations.

 

Numerous reports on skills gaps in Norfolk have highlighted a number of groups of young people/young adults, aged 30 years and under, which are underrepresented in STEM (science, technology, engineering, mathematics) education and training initiatives; these include people with protected characteristics and those seeking to learn new STEM skills.

 

Some of the groups which were highlighted include women and girls, young adults struggling to access work, early school leavers as well as those leaving care. 

 

In announcing this initiative, funded through the Dudgeon Offshore Wind Farm, Karl Butler, Plant Manager of the Dudgeon Offshore Wind Farm, said: “Since the Dudgeon Community Fund STEM Programme was established in 2018 by the Dudgeon Offshore Wind Farm, it has helped to support STEM education initiatives for over 12,500 young people in Norfolk, primarily in school years 8-13.

 

“However, for me, learning and development doesn’t stop when you are young or leave school or college. By widening the criteria, I am excited that the fund will manage to support many more individuals at differing stages of their lives. This is something to which I fully relate having recently become an apprentice again at the age of 40! 

 

“The focus for this 2023/24 pilot funding initiative has been changed to reflect the reports’ findings, and my colleagues and I hope that it will attract applications from charities and other not-for-profit organisations that are experienced in working with this particular age group.

 

“I would stress that this initiative is additional to the Dudgeon Community Fund schools STEM Programme, for which the grant applications window for the 2023/24 academic year will open in late February 2023.”     

 

Grants will normally be for a maximum of £10,000, but where a proposal is to work across multiple sites, a larger request will be considered. The Dudgeon Community Fund is administered by the Norfolk Community Foundation, and full details of the application procedure for this pilot funding can be found at: https://www.norfolkfoundation.com/funding-support/grants/groups/the-dudgeon-stem-skills-and-employability-fund-for-younger-people/.