25 November 2015

Wednesday 25 November 2015

Invest in Quality, and young people will see the benefits

Quality Mark accreditation boosts funding, capacity and continuous improvement FOR youth clubs, says new report

Published today, report findings reveal that despite the harsh financial climate, accreditation schemes like our London Youth Quality Mark do help youth clubs and community organisations to improve services, access vital funding and increase their influence amongst local stakeholders.

The report by Shephard & Moyes – generously funded by the John Lyon’s Charity – evaluates the process and impact of our Quality Mark accreditation on youth clubs. The London Youth Quality Mark is a bespoke quality assurance scheme for youth clubs, endorsed by City & Guilds which involves young people in the assessment.

The evaluation* found that:

  • 86% of clubs agreed that the Quality Mark had helped encourage a culture of continuous improvement in the organisation and 75% said it had helped them motivate staff and volunteers
  • 64% of youth clubs with a Quality Mark said it improved their ability to generate funding and increased their influence on local stakeholders. And many clubs agreed that even where the accreditation was not the deciding factor it was still useful in obtaining the extra funding.
  • One senior youth worker described how having achieved the Quality Mark helped them quickly and successfully do due diligence for a grant of £38,000 from a local funder

Many survey respondents claimed the accreditation has offered them political clout, with one club leader saying:

“It has given us more ammunition when dealing with the council… It has changed the relationship; we now have more power in discussions with the council’s youth service.”

A copy of the Summary and full Evaluation Report is available for download.

A number of key voluntary sector funders including the John Lyon’s Charity, City Bridge Trust, Hillingdon Community Trust, and The Monument Trust have committed to supporting clubs to achieve accreditation, as they believe it helps ensure that stronger, more effective work with young people can take place in communities where it is needed. Local authorities such as the London Borough of Merton also back the scheme.

Rosie Ferguson, chief executive of London Youth said:

“It is more important than ever that young people have access to services that can support them to gain the confidence resilience and networks that will help them succeed in life. The London Youth Quality Mark helps organisations to be better managed, focus on what is important, engage young people and operate safely and effectively so those outcomes are achieved. We’d like to see even more funders, Local Authorities and partners endorsing the Quality Mark, so that good youth work can thrive and grow within even more communities.“


* The evaluation had a good response rate of 20% to the e-survey – 41 responses out of 206 clubs who have achieved or are working towards the Quality Mark. Of those who responded, 28 have achieved the Quality Mark which represents 31% of all Quality Mark holders. Further face-to-face and telephone interviews were also held with an addition 10 clubs.