Getting youngsters off the streets of Kingsway is working, the organisers of a youth project have said.
The Reach Out! project is celebrating its first birthday and organisers from the Quedgeley Community Trust have released a report showing the successes of the first year.
The project was set up in response to concerns about anti-social behaviour on the streets of Quedgeley and Kingsway.
Youth worker Jess Price was appointed to go out on the streets once a week to meet youngsters. She has since left the job and a new youth worker is set to be appointed.
But the trust says the figures speak for themselves.
Some 45 youngsters have been engaged in activities after more than 100 hours of working with young people.
Kevin Tudor, chairman of the Quedgeley Community Trust, said: “The Reach Out! Project was established in response to young people’s concerns that youth activities in the area were inadequate and reports from the police and local secondary school that showed there were a number of young people in the Quedgeley and Kingsway area that they felt were at risk of becoming involved in crime or anti-social behaviour.
“Our aim was to build relationships with young people aged 14 to 18 through our detached ‘street based’ youth work, find out their views, involve them in the
community and provide positive activities.
“Reach Out! has been a great success. Quedgeley Community Trust have been pleased with all it has achieved.”
Activities provided for the youngsters have included the ‘pimp my ped’ road safety and paint spraying event, barbecues, laser tag, trips to Pizza Hut, Frightmare at Over Farm and a drop in snooker tournament.
Many young people now attend the youth club at the Q Club, in School Lane, as a result of meeting our youth workers on the streets.
Seven young people involved in Reach Out! helped to set up the Quedgeley Youth Parish Council too.
Some youngsters have been supported with emotional and practical issues such as low self-confidence, homelessness, and college and job applications.
Community leaders came together at Capital Venue, in Waterwells, recently to listen to the progress that has been made. Among them was police and crime commissioner Martin Surl, who has part funded the project.
Then also listened to Adam Balding, ex Gloucester Rugby captain and the city’s organiser for next year’ s Rugby World Cup events, talk about his career and how the community can get involved and benefit from next year’s events.
Mr Balding said: “Reach Out! is an excellent initiative and we hope that we can incorporate some of its projects alongside the World Cup events.”