Crime cash paid for sum­mer events

Lennox Herald - - NEWS - Jenny Foulds

A sum­mer pro­gramme which set out to give young peo­ple a range of con­fi­dence-build­ing, pos­i­tive ex­pe­ri­ences has been hailed a huge suc­cess.

At­tract­ing more than 500 par­tic­i­pants, the six-week ini­tia­tive of­fered young peo­ple a range of ac­tiv­i­ties to pre­pare them for em­ploy­ment or fur­ther ed­u­ca­tion.

West Dun­bar­ton­shire Youth Al­liance, which in­cor­po­rates West Dun­bar­ton­shire Coun­cil’s Work­ing4U team and vol­un­tary group Y Sort-it, de­liv­ered the pro­gramme of events, which was backed by £13,250 from the Scot­tish Gov­ern­ment.

Orig­i­nally aim­ing to sign up 80 young peo­ple be­tween the ages of 10 and 18, the project team ac­tu­ally reg­is­tered 512 young­sters on a wide range of ac­tiv­i­ties that in­cluded sport­ing ac­tiv­i­ties and cul­tural vis­its.

Coun­cil­lor Diane Docherty, the con­vener of hous­ing and com­mu­ni­ties, said: “The idea be­hind these ac­tiv­i­ties was to of­fer young peo­ple the kind of in­ter­ac­tion and stim­u­la­tion that could stand them in good stead as they move for­ward into em­ploy­ment or fur­ther ed­u­ca­tion and clearly this is a project that we would very much like to con­tinue in the com­ing years.”

Coun­cil­lor Iain McLaren, vice-con­vener of hous­ing and com­mu­ni­ties, added: “The feed­back from the sum­mer pro­gramme is very en­cour­ag­ing and shows that the young peo­ple who took part cer­tainly had a pos­i­tive ex­pe­ri­ence.

“It is vi­tal that we en­sure young peo­ple from ev­ery com­mu­nity in West Dun­bar­ton­shire are given the op­por­tu­nity to learn new skills.

“I would like to thank ev­ery vol­un­teer and mem­ber of staff who worked so hard on this project and ev­ery young­ster who took part.”

Ac­tiv­i­ties were spread be­tween Dum­bar­ton, the Vale of Leven and the Cly­de­bank area.

Holy­rood jus­tice sec­re­tary Michael Math­e­son came to Dum­bar­ton and said: “I was de­lighted to be able to meet the vol­un­teers and learn at first hand the very real dif­fer­ences that the Scot­tish Gov­ern­ment’s Cash­back pro­gramme is mak­ing to young peo­ple’s lives.

“The pro­gramme al­lows us to use money seized from crim­i­nals and in­vest it in fa­cil­i­ties and ac­tiv­i­ties which ben­e­fit lo­cal com­mu­ni­ties through­out Scot­land.”

Suc­cess Don­ald Brown, Katie Lees, Michael Math­e­son, Ab­bie Ly­den, Lewis Tim­ney and Michael McKer­nan

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