Around 100 young people have attended a new youth club over the six weeks summer holiday. The club has been held in different locations to accommodate the coronavirus (COVID-19) guidance. The club was originally due to launch in 2020 but was put on hold due to the pandemic.
Kendal Youth Zone was set up by Town Councillor Adam Edwards to aid youths from different communities. Young people can sign up for the club via the ‘Kendal Youth Zone’ Facebook Group or can be referred to the club by contacting Kendal Integrated Care Community (ICC) at firstname.lastname@example.org
The club will continue to run in different locations around Kendal, offering a free safe space for ten to 18-year-olds which gives them the opportunity to hang out with friends and meet others, get creative or learn something new. Young people can take part in activities such as outdoor discos and cinema experiences with other opportunities such as roller discos at Kendal Leisure Centre, indoor activities and trips to local outdoor centres planned.
The club, which runs on funding grants, also invites organisations such as Kendal ICC and charity and Third Sector organisations, to give young people the opportunity to talk about a variety of different issues they may be facing such as child bereavement.
Cllr Edwards said: “With the likes of Storm Desmond and the pandemic it’s really important our young people have the opportunities to talk about social issues affecting them such as bereavement and other issues faced and a place where they can socialise with others of a similar age and take part in activities to help improve their wellbeing.
“I came up with the idea of starting the club in 2019 to reevaluate the way we work with young people. There isn’t much for young people to do in Kendal that is free and not every young person or their family can afford to do the paid activities – which is why it was important to me to keep the club free.
“Plus, if you don’t get young people’s attention within the first few seconds you have lost them. That’s why we are constantly trying to reinvent and recreate and moving to different locations to hold their interest.”
Cara Stride, Development Lead for Kendal ICC, said: “It’s really important that young people have a safe place to go to socialise with others of a similar age and take part in activities that help them to flourish and also support their wellbeing – it’s fantastic to see what Adam and the Youth Zone have achieved so far.”
Feedback from young people attending the Youth Zone and their parents has included:
· “We have enjoyed being out and socialising.”
· “I think it’s a brilliant idea my child has somewhere to go near where we live and there is no charge so youths are free to attend as they like without the burden on adults.”
You can find out more about the Youth Zone at its Facebook Page here https://www.facebook.com/groups/kendalyouthzone/