Community support for youth campaign
Fishing club and boot camp are among suggestions
There is widespread support for increased facilities for young people in Cambuslang, initial feedback to a community survey has shown.
The survey is asking residents what they would like to see introduced for 12 to 18- yearolds and aims to identify positive ways young people can spend their time in the evenings and weekends.
Launched by Halfway teen Robyn Feeney, the survey follows a spate of underage drinking and anti- social behaviour at Cambuslang Park.
With several young people saying they have ‘nowhere else’ to meet friends, the survey aims to find out what young people want in their town before trying to realise their wishes.
Explaining the survey was launched just a few days ago, Robyn, 19, said about 90 per cent of responders agreed there is a lack of facilities.
“There has been over 140 responses so far,” Robyn said. “A few of them are from parents who have kids and 13 per cent are from young people giving their suggestions.
“One boy suggested a fishing club and quite a few like the idea of outdoor fitness, such as boot camp, where they are still with their pals but it is something else for them to do and it’s enjoying the park in a positive way.”
She added: “To see how the community has come together is wonderful. Everyone has realised that something needs to be done to make things better for young people. I’m really happy there is no more arguing, it is now a much more positive debate.”
The sur vey coincides with a petition which Robyn launched last week. It urges South Lanarkshire Council, the Scottish Government and local community to work together to create a suitable outlet for young people.
Signed by around 350 people, Robyn says the petition and results of the survey will be passed to the council, government ministers and community leaders later this summer.
Me a n w h i l e U n i v e r s a l Connections has launched a programme of summer activities for young people of secondary school age.
Tony Hutchison of the youth project, which has outlets in both Cambuslang and Rutherglen, said staff do all they can to identify and tackle risky behaviour in youths such as underage drinking.
He said: “During the summer some people are coming in hungover from the night before. We talk to them and take them on trips and we get them to enjoy themselves, to experience natural highs and excitement.
“We try to show young people how to have fun without drink.”
But Mr Hutchison said underage drinking was no bigger an issue in Cambuslang than in any other community across Scotland.
“There is an issue but it’s not a massive issue,” he said. “I wouldn’t say it was that prevalent, that every young person out there, that they are doing it.”
South Lanarkshire Council has also highlighted a number of existing outlets for young people in Cambuslang, including Universal Connections, which is open 67 hours per week, and Springhall Youth Project, which runs Friday night discos for youths.
Other youth projects, operated by Regen:fx Youth Trust, run in community centres in Fernhill, Burnhill, Westburn and the Circuit.
Green space Anti-social behaviour in Cambuslang Park has led to calls for more facilities for local youths in the town