Backing proven ideas

Our funding helps careers programme providers scale up successful careers and enterprise activities and create new opportunities to introduce young people to the world of work.  Our grants provide initial funding that sustainably takes proven programmes into areas of need, rapidly increasing the best provision where it will have the most impact.

We use our research to identify best practice in careers and enterprise and mentoring programmes and to leverage additional investment into the system, with more than £13.7 million in external funding secured to date.

Opportunity Areas Fund

Following £1 million invested in The Careers & Enterprise Fund 2016, we will target another £1 million in the Government’s Opportunity Areas this year.

Funding will be invested in careers programmes to give young people in the Opportunity Areas a chance to access encounters with the world of work. Programmes will demonstrate their effectiveness in working effectively with the young people in greatest need of support.

The six additional Opportunity Areas are Bradford, Doncaster, Fenland & East Cambridgeshire, Hastings, Ipswich and Stoke-on-Trent.

More about the Opportunity Areas Fund

The Careers & Enterprise Fund 

The Careers & Enterprise Fund was set up to ensure that all young people are given multiple encounters with the fast-changing world of work. We award grants to careers programme providers to help them deliver more activities and employer encounters in secondary schools and colleges across England — especially in the geographical areas most in need of support, or ‘cold spots’.

  • Almost £10 million invested in 85 proven careers and enterprise programmes.
  • Plus more than £9.25 million in matched funding.
  • 75% invested in ‘cold spots’ areas in most need of support.
  • 450,000 young people set to benefit.

Read about the Careers & Enterprise Fund
Research: Understanding the careers cold spots 2016 

Mentoring Fund

Our Mentoring Fund invests in organisations across England that run successful mentoring programmes - helping them to deliver more activities and reach more young people.
With the support of the Enterprise Adviser Network we are bringing organisations together to share best practice, deepen their understanding of effective mentoring programmes and identify the best ways to support young people in their education and employment choices. 

  • An additional £4 million invested in 39 mentoring programmes.
  • Funding will support 25,000 pre-GCSE teenagers at risk of disengaging from education by 2020.

Read more on the Mentoring Fund
Research: What works in careers and enterprise?


The Good Bidding Guide

This guide aims to help you to produce successful bids and tenders. It focuses on investment from our funds but is designed to be useful in winning funding from other sources.

Characteristics of Effective Programmes

This highlights excellent practice from our community and provides a framework for effective delivery so that we can all continue to improve careers and enterprise learning for young people.