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The Listening Fund Scotland

The Listening Fund was initially developed by a group of committed funders – Comic Relief, Corra Foundation, The National Lottery Community Fund, The Gannochy Trust and William Grant Foundation – who recognised that more was needed to help increase opportunities for the voices of children and young people to be heard. The aim of the investment collaboration was to develop and embed listening practices within organisations allowing for more active and responsive listening.

In 2019, The Listening Fund Scotland committed over £400,000 to 11 children and youth focused charities operating across Scotland. The fund focused investment in supporting organisational capacity. Alongside investment, funded organisations were offered capacity building support and reflective spaces to share lessons on the opportunities and challenges of creating a listening culture.

The Listening Fund was designed taking a rights-based approach consulting with children and young people on the initial idea, followed by a participatory approach towards the development of criteria, application form and final funding recommendations. The Listening Fund Scotland was evaluated by The Centre of Youth Impact.

To find out more about The Listening Fund and the funded charities click here. You can also find blogs, podcasts, reports and resources below.

The Listening Fund Toolkit

With the conclusion of The Listening Fund in 2022, partners have collaborated on the creation of a Listening Toolkit – a resource that forms part of the fund’s legacy, offering practical tips and insights for others looking to change their organisational listening culture and practices.

The toolkit shares resources and activities used by four Listening Fund Partners: Access to Industry, The Moira Anderson Foundation, The Junction, and Girvan Youth Trust. They have been carefully curated collaboratively with staff members and in consultation with children and young people to create a reference that advocates listening as a core mechanism and way of being for engagement with children and young people.

You can download the full toolkit, plus all the individual tools, resources and activities from it, below.

Listening Toolkit

Blogs & Podcasts

There’s so much to learn from listening – Read the blog post on our website

Toonspeak: Time Oot – Read the blog on the Listening Fund website

Impact Arts: Sketchy Youths – Read the blog Post on the Listening Fund Website

Hot Chocolate Trust: Listening to Young People – Read the blog on the Listening Fund website

Allison Mathews, Head of Knowledge and Learning, National Lottery Community Fund


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