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New grant will open science clubs up to all

Tuesday 30th July 2019

Science Oxford has received a grant from The Austin and Hope Pilkington Trust to support free places at our science clubs for children from areas of socio-economic deprivation in Oxford and Abingdon.

The Austin and Hope Pilkington Trustgives grants to charities working with those in society who face the greatest challenges and whose opportunities are most limited. Their ethos aligns with our own aim to engage young people from underserved communities in STEM and STEM activities.

This funding allows us to provide 14 funded places every month at our interactive Saturday Clubs (for 12 months) as well as some travel costs. It will also cover two fully funded places at a special creative summer camp in Oxford. Each funded child will also be given a family ticket to our new Science Oxford Centre and woodland, to promote continued engagement and help develop family ‘science capital’.

Bridget Holligan, Director of Education & Engagement says; “We keep prices for our clubs as low as we can, yet this still puts the cost out of reach for some families. This grant means we can remove the financial barrier that prevents many children from accessing our activites and hopefully give them a really positive, memorable experience that will inspire them to engage in STEM going forward.”

Some areas of Oxfordshire score highly on the indices of multiple deprivation and are within the top twenty percent of deprived areas in England. Forty-four percent of these children live below the poverty line and have below-average attainment at school.  The Pilkington grant will mean we can provide children with the opportunity to see themselves as scientists and engineers through practical, challenging and fun activities which develop valuable skills, give them a reason to achieve, and help raise aspirations.

Bridget says, “We’ll be working closely with early intervention hubs, social care workers, locality officers and schools to identify children from targeted areas who would benefit most. All our activities at the clubs and camps are accessible yet challenging, giving children pride in their achievements and building self-confidence. We are thrilled to receive this funding and know what a difference it will make to young lives.”

If you’d like to find out more about eligibility for funded places at our clubs, please contact Luiza or Rowena by email to [email protected] or by calling 01865 810000.

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