RECENT GRANTS AWARDED
In 2016 Hope for Youth awarded grants to 7 Youth Projects: Enagh Youth Forum, 174 Trust, Life Changes Lives, Dundonald Sea Cadets, REACH Across, Dreamscheme NI and Safety Near Water.
Project 1: R.E.A.C.H ACROSS (Residentials, Educational Activities, Community Holidays)
1) Area & Participant Profile
REACH Across Members are primarily recruited from officially recognized areas of disadvantage in the North-West region of N. Ireland. Despite political progress, the region is still adversely affected by high unemployment, sectarianism, under-age drinking and anti-social behavior. There is also an increasing level of mental health and suicide-related issues affecting young people. REACH Across members are 14-17yrs old, which we believe is the must vulnerable age group in relation to negative behaviours and influences. The region is still generally polarized with limited mixed housing and shared facilities.
2) Project Aims and Objectives
The project aimed to develop and strengthen cross-community contact during the Summer months, which are generally regarded as the most divisive amongst young people, as they can either engage in positive or negative opportunities. The project aimed to continue the development of personal skills and confidence levels that were kick-started during our Spring Programme. The project had a twin track approach to achieving its aims, by organizing a Summer Intervention Scheme and an Outdoor Education Camp during a period of heightened community tensions, contentious parades, bonfires and commemorations. The primary objectives of the project were
1) To recruit 50 young people on a cross-community basis, primarily from recognizedareas of social disadvantage and isolation.
2) To provide an intervention programme of outdoor activities, education visits, craft workshops and shared learning sessions that will promote active citizenship and healthier lifestyles
3) To provide an Outdoor Education Camp for 30 project participants, that will enable contact and personal development over a sustained period and will motivate participants to register for follow-up training and events, during our Autumn Programme.
4) To benefit participants in relation to employability, education, self-esteem and self-management.
3) Purpose of Funding
The Hope for Youth grant was specifically used to cover costs of the Summer Intervention Scheme and Outdoor Activity Camp. Participants were male and female and aged between 14 – 17yrs old. The Intervention Scheme included craft and cultural workshops, education visits and team-building activities.
Outputs of the Project included
a) 24 young people attended a cultural design workshop at the Nerve Centre’s FabLab that included producing self-designed t-shirts. Participants were also able to use laser cutting equipment to produce small items from recycled materials
b) 28 young people attended an Education Visit to Belfast that included a tour of the PeaceLines and visits to Crumlin Road Gaol, Stormont and W5 Science Centre.
c) 44 young people attended a Civic Activism workshop that focused on improving the local infrastructure for young people, prior to a visit to Belfast Zoo. Later that day the full group participated in a civic engagement workshop that invited Members to name a new housing estate planned for L’Derry.
d) 24 young people visited the RADAR Safety Centre in Belfast, during which Members were made aware of the respective dangers at home, on the street and on-line.
e) 28 young people and 4 Leaders attended the Summer Activity Camp which included a range of activities such as banana boating, high ropes course, zipline, laser quest and the crazy golf buggy. This was a self-catering residential which provided opportunities for participants to develop their catering and groupwork skills during a COOK IT workshop, as well as their confidence and interaction levels.
4) Overall Benefits
a) The project provided sustained integration for over 50 young people, during the Summer months and provided positive alternatives to an age group that is vulnerable to anti-social behavior, under-age drinking and lingering sectarianism
b) The education visits and development workshops helped to increase the social, political and cultural awareness of participants, which we hope will enable members to be more tolerant, understanding and active citizens.
c) Several participants were referred to REACH Across by Social Services and therefore the project provided development and recreational opportunities, for young people from disadvantaged backgrounds or difficult family circumstances.
d) We have encouraged participants to add their experiences and learning to personal statements and CVs and therefore the project has benefited their personal skills, self-management and employability.
e) During the residential, participants took part in a Prejudice Reduction workshop which required them to write and perform a short drama based on a prejudice or stereotyping scenario. This workshop helped many participants to be more aware and understanding of the consequences of prejudice, racism or sectarianism. A 2nd exercise required the group to employ someone based on trickled pieces of information.
f) Participants identified personal and general benefits through individual evaluation forms at the end of the residential and also through informal evaluations at the end of project events and workshops.
Enagh Youth Forum's Hope For Youth Funded 'You Know My Name, Not My Story Project'
The project reached, engaged and included a total of 36 young people of mixed gender and religion aged 11-18 years old.
25 young people reside in Strathfoyle and 11 reside in Maydown.
- The essence of this project was promoting diversity and good relations.
- This was achieved through young people taking part in a wide of range of workshops which included exploring 'single identity', 'flags & emblems' & 'understanding myself and others'.
- These workshops were very well attended, and they enabled young people to come together in common purpose, breaking down barriers and promoting use of shared spaces. Whilst young people really benefited from these workshops, its clear from the group evaluation that more work is required to build on the foundations of this 'working together'.
- Other workshops explored anti-social behaviour and drugs and substance misuse and young people were able to learn from a number of dvd educational tools and apply the learning, mainly the facilitators utilised a harm reduction approach.
Young people also took part and benefited from a wide range of activities including:
- Successfully completing a Star 1 Kayaking course at Enagh lough with Assessment on the River Foyle (15)
- Graffiti Workshops (Urban Arts) (10)
- Successfully completing a REC 1 Emergency First Aid Course (12)
- Music Workshops (12)
For those young people who successfully completes the Star 1 kayaking, it has increased their confidence and self-esteem and some of them have expressed their wish to now progress further and hope to complete Star 2 kayaking later in the summer. It was also great to see young people connecting with the environment, increasing their own health and well-being and making use of the natural resource Enagh Lough which is on Strathfoyles door step.
Young people were encouraged to remove offensive graffiti from in and around Strathfoyle and then created their an inter-generational art piece for the Enagh Seniors Group which is now permanently displayed in Maydown Play Park. For some of these young people, this was their first experience in working on an inter-generational project. Other graffiti workshops involved young people working closely with Maydown Amateur Boxing Club and creating a few permanent art pieces down at the club's training suite.
12 young people successfully completed REC 1 First Aid and have now learned life saving skills that will enable them to help protect themselves and others in the future.
The music workshops worked specifically for a group of young girls aged 11-13 and helped them to build their confidence and self-esteem and all of the participants reported very positive feedback when describing the facilitator who seemed to connect with them also exploring issues such as bullying and body image and how music can be used as a tool to bring about issues based conversations.
Over the next few weeks this project will conclude with 12 young people taking part in 'Save Your Mate' which is a short one day course that explores staying safe, bullying, first aid and how to be a friend. This potentially life saving course will specifically benefit young people aged 10-13 whom we have already identified as engaging in 'risk taking' behaviour'.
In terms of project promotion we utilised a small amount of funding to purchase a 'pull up display' with the Hope For Youth logo and Enagh Youth Forum logo both printed onto it and utilised this during a certificate presentation on Monday 9th January 2017 where the Mayoress of Derry City and Strabane District Council presented young people with their certificates at an event held at Strathfoyle Library.
Eamonn O'Donnell - Youth Support Worker with Enagh Youth Forum said:
"This project made a real difference as it brought young people together in common purpose. It enabled them to achieve qualifications and helped to build their self esteem, confidence and resilience. It also helped connect young people with other young people, meet new people and do new things. This project is a stepping stone for ourselves as youth workers in terms of building on the success of this project for the future and planning future interventions to in essence help provide 'Hope For Youth".
Grants Awarded in 2015 In 2015 Hope for Youth funded 10 youth projects across Northern Ireland. 2015 had seen an astonishing increase in applications from 111 different organisations, all desperately seeking financial and grant assistance to help them make a difference. Award Ceremony took place at Hillsborough Castle in the presence of the Chief Patron, HRH The Duchess of Gloucester and presented to: Northend United FC, Craigavon Intercultural Programme, Cairn Lodge Amateur Boxing, Carrowshee Park, Creggan Country Park, Speedwell Trust, Crossover Basketball, Gasyard, Dungannon Youth Centre & Sixmilecross.