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/ 21 January 2021

The Spark Fund opens for round 3

The Spark Fund is an initiative by Capital Youth to see under 25s across the Diocese of London be empowered and flourish as young leaders, whilst sharing their Christian faith in new and innovative ways.

Launched in 2019, The Spark Fund has so far supported 11 projects in parishes across the Diocese that are owned and led by young people who have been and are preparing to creatively share their faith. From a small group of young people engaging in key questions of faith to Fortnite based Bible videos, even a Contemporary-Sacred Music concert with pieces composed by young musicians!  We are super excited to see what might just happen through these projects and the young people running them.

The Spark Fund is now back for the third round of funding, but we are changing things up a little in the way in which you can apply.

How to apply

All you need is an idea:

We’re now taking idea submissions for The Spark Fund all year-long. It doesn’t matter how simple or formed the idea is, as long as it involves sharing the Christian faith with 11-18s. It must come from a young person or group of young people and be their idea, as they will be the person in charge of running the project, with support from an adult sponsor.

For the third round, ideas must be submitted by 9 April to be included in our third round of funding and they must be submitted by one or more young people with an agreed adult sponsor from their church or school (youth worker, vicar or chaplain).

We understand the impact of Covid-19:

The prospect of starting a new project at this time may seem a little daunting, but this is a great time to engage with other young people and encourage them with a sense of purpose. Since the beginning of the pandemic, many of our projects have had to adapt and have found new creative ways to see their proposal through, including hosting online concerts and events, to planning on Zoom and more.

Once the idea has been submitted, if fits within the guidelines, applicants will then be invited to attend a Funding Factory Workshop which we currently anticipate will take place online in April. This is where the board and other creatives will be on hand to help them develop the idea into the start of a plan, before completing the funding application.

Ideas that receive funding on application will be:

  • Young peoples’ ideas and innovation
  • Projects which talk/share about faith in Jesus
  • Social action projects which integrate faith*
  • Projects explicitly linked to your church
  • Projects with potential to appeal to 11-18s
  • Projects with a clear plan, budget and expected impact on reaching 11-18s

* The Compassionate Communities team can give advice and support on tackling poverty and inequality in your community!

What cannot be funded:

  • A paid youth worker
  • Project ideas that aren’t owned and led by young people
  • Projects that are not missional in focus
  • Projects which lack detail and long-term vision
  • Young people without suitable adult sponsors

 

What projects have happened already?

  • Bishop Ramsey School ran a residential with 38 young people where they explored Alpha together.
  • Uxbridge Parish (St Andrew’s) hosted a series of events for local young people, including knife crime awareness, open mic nights in a local cafe and laser tag, all with a missional focus.
  • Christ Church, Mayfair started a small youth-led group which is gradually growing and attracting more young people.
  • St Marylebone School students started a film club where they watch and discuss the themes of a film within a faith context.
  • All Hallows, Bow are designing and creating Bible story videos using Fortnite, which will be used alongside invitational events for discussion and the videos made public online.
  • Hampstead Parish Church are commissioning young composers within their parish to create sacred contemporary music which will be performed live at a concert and in the meantime, they hope to record the pieces and publish on social media.
  • St Peter’s, Harrow are planning to hold youth evangelism training events with a ‘sending out’ element for young disciples to be equipped to share their faith.
  • Christ Church, W4 are planning mental health awareness events as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic and wider social issues, where young people will be able to share together, seek professional support and be invited to stay for a reflective time of worship.
  • Bishop Stopford School are creating their own ‘Alpha’ style course with videos which will be shared widely and used within all the form groups of their school.

 

If you’d like to discuss a project idea before applying, feel free to email The Spark Fund team at sparkfund@nulllondon.anglican.org.

What will young people in your church decide to create? Find out more and apply at london.anglican.org/spark


About Levi Phillips

Levi is the Creative Lead at Capital Youth, an initiative run by the Diocese of London Children & Youth Support team. He volunteers in youth ministry and leads worship at Christ Church W4 in Chiswick. Levi completed a degree in Applied Theology before working in marketing and design in the corporate space, bringing both worlds together in his current role at Capital Youth.

Read more from Levi Phillips

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