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Basildon organisations receive £29,000 from Essex Violence and Vulnerability Unit

14th March 2024
Posted by Johnny Jenkins

Children and young people in Basildon are facing a brighter future thanks to a series of grants from the Essex Violence and Vulnerability Unit (VVU) to two organisations in Basildon.

The VVU awarded £29,200 to two organisations in Basildon that are working to help and support young people who are at the risk of being exposed to or led into crime, or who have been a victim of crime.

The organisations that will benefit from the grants are:

Across Essex the VVU has provided 18 grants, worth up to nearly half a million pounds, to a wide range of organisations to support young people.

Roger Hirst, Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner for Essex and Chair of the Essex Violence and Vulnerability Partnership congratulated all the charities who are recipients in the latest round of VVU funding, all working to support local communities whilst helping to keep the county’s young and vulnerable away from crime.

Mr. Hirst said: “Crime is preventable; tackling violence and protecting our young and vulnerable people are key priorities in my Police and Crime Plan. The VVU grant supports activities that give children and young people access to mentoring, counselling, friendships and trusted adults.  Many offer positive activities for young people to get involved with – sport, drama, youth clubs – and provide targeted support away from involvement in violent crime or antisocial behaviour.”

Mr. Hirst continued: “All the charities we are funding are committed to protecting young people, to give them a better future. By working together, we can make Essex a safer place for children to live and grow up in.”

Achieve Thrive Flourish is using the VVU’s funding to engage young people with sport, activities and community engagements. Regular coaches will support young people to connect, build resilience and forge relationships with others. Achieve Thrive Flourish will use the funding to allow full-time professional, DBS-trained staff to attend three sessions a week and interact with and support young people who attend the sessions. The VVU’s funding will also pay towards food and drink each week.

Stuart Martin, Communities Manager, Achieve Thrive Flourish, said: “Securing the VVU funding is paramount to strengthening the communities in which we work. The difference this funding is making is not just on individuals but on the wider community as a whole. Since the VVU have funded our projects, we have worked hard to create safe, welcoming and tolerant spaces for young people to attend. If the young people we support can be involved in good work as an alternative to Anti-Social Behaviour, then their lives and others are all the more positive because of it.”

Meanwhile, Gateway Community Media will use the VVU’s funding to employ a youth worker. The youth worker will support young people on a Saturday, plus weekly sessions and sessions during the school holidays. The main aim is to help young people to engage in radio and many of their young people have gone on to work for BBC and commercial radio.

Danny Lawrence, Business Development and Executive Director, Gateway Community Media, said: “We are really grateful to the VVU for the funding. We love inspiring young people to develop a love for radio and the grant helps us to do this. The grant allows us to continue to support young people in our local area who love media and help them build on those skills.”

Cllr Louise McKinlay, Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Levelling Up, Communities and Business Engagement, Essex County Council said: “The grants given by the Essex Violence and Vulnerability Unit will make a positive impact on young people’s lives and will help to give a better future to so many. The work that the organisations are doing in the communities they serve is outstanding and I thank them and the VVU for the impact that their efforts are having on our young people, across the county.”

To discover more about the VVU, visit For more on Achieve Thrive Flourish, visit, and Gateway Community Media, visit

Image credit: Achieve Thrive Flourish