A programme aimed at engaging children and young people in two Northumberland communities has been hailed a success.
Over 170 individual young people from Lynemouth and Hadston have participated in a wide range of activities as part of the #getinvolved! project.
The project started in February 2017 and received a £10,000 grant from Karbon Homes. It was developed by young people from Northumberland charity Leading Link, the Children in Care Council, Northumberland Young Advisors and Youth Justice Centre who identified emotional health needs as the biggest concern for young people living in Northumberland.
The project aimed to target and engage young people to get out and about and try new things. By working in partnership with the Northumberland Adolescent Services and Participation Team, Leading Link provided an extensive school holiday and Saturday programme to improve young people’s social and development needs as well as managing one-to-one mentoring.
One-to-one mentors worked with the young people and their parents, building trust and helping them to achieve their aspirations. The activity programme included social and interpersonal skills, relationship with money, independent living and social action projects.
In total, 173 young people engaged in the project with some of those still very much involved. 100 young people regularly volunteered and 28 qualifications were achieved including national V-inspired awards, an accredited Community Action Award and Leadership award.
119 young people took part in a five-week enterprise programme where collectively, their products raised in excess of £4,000 which was donated to charities of their choice.
20 young people were involved in targeted mentoring and issue-based group work.
Lyn Horton, Chief Executive Officer for Leading Link, said: “The #getinvolved! project has been a resounding success, achieving and significantly surpassing targets.
“Improving the social capital of all of these young people at various stages enables the local community to benefit. The #getinvolved! project has demonstrated how it is possible for young people to develop and thrive and become role models for their younger peers.”
Mary Ormston, Community Engagement Officer at Karbon Homes, said: “This has been a really successful project and one we are very proud to have supported.
“Karbon’s aim is to provide a strong foundation for more people. By targeting and engaging young people, it has provided them with the platform to gain real life experiences and help build resilience and confidence to feel ownership of their own communities.
“It’s been lovely to see them develop key life skills such as engagement, communication, researching information, working as a team - all of which are transferable and can aid employability. As we cannot foresee the types of employment that are going to be offered to our future generation, it is more apt to teach them resilience and creativity. This project has certainly provided this.”