Big Success for the Big Swing – Safer Communities Fund enables young people’s engagement
‘The Big Swing adventure playground in conjunction with a number of partners, has been successful in receiving two separate awards from the Safer Communities funding stream.
The first award was to provide a rolling programme of opportunities for children and young people aged 13 upwards, from the local estate in Ravenscliffe, Bradford. The motivation behind the project was due to a number of older young people found to cause some issues on the local estate, particularly at weekends. Therefore the funding supported fun activities operating over the weekend, as well as on a Monday evening when there was very limited provision in the area.
The benefits of this project were numerous, but one of the best outcomes is that by coming together with other organisations and creating partnerships within the local area, we were able to solve this identified problem.
The young people engaged in activities not normally open to them – such as street golf – and as a consequence, they experienced a boost in self-confidence. Moreover, some of them considered more positive options and identified safer choices when it comes to spending their free time.
As a result, the whole community reported a drop in anti-social behavior. We are now working with the Youth Service to extend this initiative for a further 6 months, supporting a number of identified young people with a targeted intervention programme and awarded funding from the Local Authority.
The second Safer Communities award which was received earlier this year, enabled us to provide extra playworker support for the Easter provision. As a consequence of the funding, we were able to run a complete, 2-week timetable of adventure play activities with a full complement of staff. This allowed even more children to come and play at the Big Swing and helped us estimate the number of attendees for the summer holidays. Thus, we were able to plan and deliver a fun-packed summer schedule.
Our overall and up-to-date child attendance, from April to October, has increased by 15 percent.
This round of funding is a fantastic way of giving back to the community, via the sale of stolen goods. We thought it might be useful for other community projects to be aware of and try to access it.’
Janet Jewitt, Manager of the Big Swing (Eccleshill Adventure Playground)
Read more about the fund here.