Through April to July 2017 Active Youth Outreach Services ran a pilot outreach project promoting positive behaviour and engagement supported by Safer Wyre Forest and West Mercia and Warwickshire Police. Our focus was to deliver positive diversionary activity at the Wyre Forest Leisure Centre in conjunction with the roller disco in an a empt to reduce the level of reported incidents and young people being reported for anti social behaviour.
Safer Wyre Forest and West Mercia and Warwickshire Police had identified areas of highest need in line with current local policing statistics and local neighbourhood reporting.
Safer Wyre Forest approached AYOS as a result of other successful intervention events aimed at reducing ASB in the local area. During the project we delivered sessions on a Friday evening across a 10 week period from 18:30 to 21:30 on the car park at the local leisure centre.
We utilised all of our newly refurbished mobile trailer which houses: TVs, games consoles, sofas, arts and crafts as well as other mobile equipment including table tennis and pools tables. The key aim for the sessions were to build relationships with the young people and offer structured discussions to support them in their positive behaviour choices in an attempt to reduce the level of ASB during the roller disco operating times. As part of 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 169 children and young people from DY10, 11 and 13 post codes across the ten week project. Police statistics showed 10 incidents reported and 20 children reported for ASB prior to us beginning the outreach, which dropped to 3 incidents and 6 children reported for ASB during the time the project was operational; showing a 70% reduction in anti social behaviour and related incidents compared the previous me period.
The leisure centre also reported a reduction in complaints from local residents during the project and gave this feedback:
“The 10 week long AYOS community outreach scheme that has been running on the Silverwood’s site has been nothing short than a massive success. The skillset and patience shown by the AYOS staff has been exemplary throughout the scheme, this coupled with the activities that were on offer have undoubtedly contributed to a decline in anti social behaviour throughout the Silverwood’s estate” – Luke Mitchell, Operations Manager
We have had good feedback from residents “Glad to see something being done” however, The residents still feel there is an issue with ASB but have seen a reduction in the last few weeks
As a result of the outcomes clearly it has had a positive effect in the local area, however there is a case to support a longer term intervention project in conjunction with the leisure centre and roller disco to reduce ASB further. We are hoping to gain funding for further sustained outreach work to support the children and young people in and surrounding the Silverwoods estate, giving them a consistent and safe space to seek advice and support.