SCHOOL pupils in the Scottish Borders have secured much needed funding for a variety of worthwhile charities through The Wood Foundation’s Youth and Philanthropy Initiative.

The venture philanthropic organisation established by Sir Ian Wood and his family, is the operational manager and principal funder of YPI in Scotland.

Students worked in teams to do in-depth research and develop a creative and convincing presentation in a bid to secure their school’s YPI grant of £3000.

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Each of the successful teams brought to life their social issue, the difference the charity makes, and the business case for the local impact of the £3000 grant.

The Borders students researched and represented causes including mental health, lifeboats, domestic abuse, rape and support for those with health and disability conditions.

Ali MacLachlan, UK Director at The Wood Foundation, said: “We continue to be greatly impressed by the maturity, passion, resilience, and creativity young people display through YPI.

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“Regardless of whether they secure the grant, every one of the tens of thousands of students who take part each year has the opportunity to learn more about their communities, their personal and collective roles in driving change, and the opportunity to advocate and raise awareness.

“The programme also provides a real-world learning experience which develops a host of skills, as well as contributing to the ethos and culture of a school and its connection to its community.”

“To be reflecting on 15 years of YPI is incredible. Those who completed the programme in its infancy are the workforce of today and we regularly meet inspirational third sector professionals whose first insight into charities was through YPI.

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“The numbers of young people engaged and the value of the charity grants are extraordinary. When we consider the skills and experiences that the programme has afforded to these young people, as well as the potential ongoing impact, our passion for the programme is reignited. We are excited to continue delivering a programme which empowers real and lasting impact within our communities.”

YPI launched in Scotland in 2008 and this year marks its 15th anniversary. In that time, 310,000 students have taken responsibility for £6.8m of charitable giving.

The schools and chosen charities are as follows:

Berwickshire High School – The Learning Space,

Earlston High School – Borders Women’s Aid

Eyemouth High School - St Abbs Lifeboat

Galashiels Academy - One Step Borders

Hawick High School - Stable Life

Jedburgh Grammar Campus - Rowan Boland Memorial Trust

Kelso High School - Scottish Borders Rape Crisis Centre

Selkirk High School - Scottish Borders Rape Crisis Centre