During the summer of 2016 Active Youth Outreach Services ran an outreach project promoting positive behaviour and engagement supported by Safer Wyre Forest and West Mercia and Warwickshire Police. Our focus was to deliver services in the heart of disaffected communities enabling children and young people to pursue constructive and stimulating activities.
Safer Wyre Forest and West Mercia and Warwickshire Police had identified areas of highest need in line with current local policing statistics.
Safer Wyre Forest approached AYOS as a result of our successful intervention events aimed at reducing ASB in the local area during July 2015. During the five weeks of summer we delivered two sessions per week on a Wednesday evening at Severnside Car park and Saturday afternoon at Barnfield Park in Stourport.
We utilised all of our mobile resources on-board the youth trailer which houses; TVs, games consoles, sofas, arts and crafts as well as our outdoor activities which included inflatables, archery, mobile skate ramps, table tennis and sporting equipment. The key aim for the sessions was to build relationships with the young people and offer structured discussions to support them in their day to day positive behaviour choices.
During the sessions we would encourage young people to take part in meaningful activities, use respectful communication and take the opportunity to talk to staff about any concerns or worries they have.
We successfully engaged with over 120 children and young people across the five weeks and two sites many of which a ended both locations. 100% of our attendees said that they found the youth trailer services useful, felt supported during their engagement and that it made a difference giving them something to do and somewhere to be.
During the same period in 2015 that SNT officers were conducting outreach work in Stourport, incidents of an social behaviour were found to have reduced by almost a quarter in 2016 – West Mercia and Warwickshire Police
Here are a few quotes we received from our young people:
- “Why can’t you be here every week”
- “Its great to have this on our doorstep”
- “Thank you for helping me”
- “Its great to have something interesting to do”
As a result of the positive outcomes we are hoping to gain funding for further sustained outreach work to support the children and young people of Stourport, giving them a consistent and safe space to seek advice and support.