Building Blocks is an independent registered charity which has existed since June 1999. The co-ordination of the charity was originally undertaken by West Midlands Police until transferred to the Police and Crime Commissioner in April 2016.

There are over 944,000 people under the age of 25 living within the West Midlands, this is a third of the population and the highest proportion compared to the rest of the country. Young people are not just the fastest growing community in the region they are also one of its most vulnerable. We know that the right support at the right point in life can enable a young person to develop the skills they need to overcome barriers and reach their potential.

In alignment to the Police and Crime Plan of the Police and Crime Commissioner, the strategy for the charity is to stand up for young people. The charity is committed to providing access to appropriate, high quality services in every community so that young people are empowered to build bright futures, regardless of their background or circumstances.

The charity is about to embark on significant changes in terms of its purpose to deliver greater benefits to young people. In particular Building Blocks focus will be to:-

  • Help give young people the opportunities they need to contribute to society
  • Work to identify possible early interventions for young people to prevent them from being harmed
  • Assist in providing and improving pathways into employment for young people
  • Promote work experience and training opportunities
  • Develop young people to make a difference in communities

Trustees

Building Blocks charity consists of 7 trustees who are passionate and dedicated to revitalising the charity. The charity includes representatives from the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner, West Midlands Police and independent trustees. –

  • Louisa Rolfe
  • Rahul Bissoonauth
  • Mark Kenyon
  • Saba Kayani
  • Emma Kelly
  • Mary B McGraph
  • Matt Ward

Funding stream

The charity has traditionally relied on donations and other small income streams, which have then been distributed for diversionary activities to groups across the West Midlands.  The current trustees recognise this is not ambitious enough to deliver significant benefits and the charity needs to develop and make applications. This money would then be used to deliver services in line with the charity’s objectives.  This overall approach is in line with developments in the Police and Crime Commissioners office that is in the process of obtaining the services of a bid writer in partnership with other organisations in the West Midlands.  The services of the bid writer would be available to support the Building Blocks charity.