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The Department of Work and Pensions (DWP) today announced that it has awarded two contracts worth £7 million from the Innovation Fund to two social investment partnerships established by Social Finance. The Social Impact Bonds will fund interventions to work with around 2,500 14-15 year olds who are disadvantaged or at risk of disadvantage to help them participate and succeed in education or training and thereby improve their employability.

The programmes will be delivered by Adviza in the Thames Valley and Teens and Toddlers in the North West of England. This is an exciting opportunity to engage a wide range of social investors and work with social organisations who deliver effective programmes to raise the aspirations of young people.

The DWP Innovation Fund is part of a series of government measures to tackle youth unemployment. The DWP has identified a number of outcomes against which the contracts will be measured including improved behaviour, school attendance, educational qualifications and employment opportunities. Outcomes payments from the Innovation Fund will be paid over three and half years. Unlike typical social service delivery, the funding is provided at risk by social investors, including Bridges Ventures, Big Society Capital, Barrow Cadbury Trust and the Impetus Trust, whose financial return is aligned to the positive social impact of meeting pre-agreed educational, training and employment outcomes.