Youth Engagement

Hostelling Scotland Explorer Fund

Hostelling Scotland Explorer Fund

The Explorer Fund gives young people in Scotland the opportunity to have a break away, discover Scotland and make life-long memories through funded residential trips.  We know that residential trips have a huge range of positive impacts and can be life-changing for children and young people. Through the Explorer Fund, we want to ensure every child and young person can access these amazing experiences.

Supported by membership contributions, the Explorer Fund was launched in 2018 and has been a great success.  To date over 70 groups have had funded trips supporting a range of disadvantaged young people.  In the past year schools and groups including Castelbay School on the Western Isles, Langlees Primary in Falkirk, Castlebrae High Scool in Edinburgh, DD8 Music in Angus, Smelly Welly Youth Group in Glasgow, and Build-Up Youth Group in Aberdeenshire all received fantastic trips away.  Watch our video of a group on an Explorer Funded trip here!

In October last year, S1 pupils from Castlebrae High School in Edinburgh went on an Explorer Fund trip to Stirling Youth Hostel. The trip was tied in with their classroom curriculum (the Scottish Wars of Independence and Medieval Scotland) and really brought the topics alive as they were able to visit both Stirling Castle and the Bannockburn Centre.  Pupils were also given the opportunity to plan and deliver the evening activities, which gave them the chance to gain new skills. As the trip was in October it helped to support their transition to secondary school, giving teachers and pupils the chance to get to know each other better.

We have now opened our first round of funding for 2020

Youth groups, primary schools, secondary schools and colleges working with disadvantaged young people, can apply to receive a funded residential trip to a Hostelling Scotland Youth Hostel of their choice.

For more information and advice on how to apply, download the application form and guidance notes below.  For useful information about what to expect on a trip to our Youth Hostels please read the information sheet.

We are proud to support the Brilliant Residentials campaign, to make high-quality residentials a reality for all children and young people. We ask groups applying to the Explorer Fund to consider the criteria for a brilliant residential when they are designing their trip, including co-designing their trip with young people. For more information on what makes a brilliant residential please click here

The deadline for applications is February 28th 2020. This is for trips taking place anytime up until 31th January 2021

Application Form Guidance NotesInformation Sheet

We have a separate Mini Explorer fund to support early years trips. Any early years settings or family charities supporting children up to 5 years can apply. Please click here to find out more