The Consett Churches Detached Youth project was recently awarded for its outstanding work in Consett and the surrounding area.
Youth workers reach out to an ever growing number of alienated young people – helping to improve their quality of life and give them a better future.
Many of the young people can found hanging around parks, streets and bus shelters, as there is little else top do in some of the poorest areas in the North East.
They are given a range of learning opportunities with a team of professional youth workers who listen to their needs, help them face their fears and address their issues.
Olivia and Toni Lovett of Consett Churches Detached Youth Project, with High Sheriff. Photo Tom Banks
Through informal workshops, they are offered new skills, all aimed at raising self–esteem, physical and emotional wellbeing as well as building a positive future.
Alcohol awareness and binge drinking are issues that are addressed and the youngsters are encouraged to take part in a range of activities to alleviate boredom and prevent anti-social behaviour.
The ultimate goal is to help the ‘hard-to-reach’ groups make a successful transition into adulthood, preventing crime and anti-social behaviour and ensuring that the young people are active and valued members of the community.
Support youth worker Toni Lovett said: “We are delighted. We do all sorts of things – going out and working with young people on the streets and through drop-ins.
“One of our drop-ins has 15 young people in it.”
Project manager Jackie Forbes said: “We thought going along today to make the numbers up.
“Getting this award is a real surprise. It means we will be able extend our summer programme for summer activities.”