A POLICE and crime commissioner (PCC) grant is helping to put the pride back into two deprived Stockton communities.
Cleveland PCC Steve Turner has given The Shack, in Ragworth, £5,000 as part of his Antisocial Behaviour (ASB) Fund.
The cash has paid for a range of equipment including sports and games kit and gardening, decorating and cleaning equipment.
The funding has helped keep young people in Ragworth and Primrose Hill occupied during the long, summer holidays. It has also helping the wider community.
Young people attached to The Shack summer programme spent three days taking part in a range of community action.
Activities included promoting the area’s low cost, Community Grocery to residents, who may benefit from the grocery’s “food for all” vision, as a result of the cost of living crisis.
They have also taken part in clean-up campaigns, helping residents tidy up their gardens as well as bring two neglected allotments back into use.
Young people worked as a team and took ownership of the initiative by highlighting areas, which they wanted to improve.
Participants also organised sports, games and other activities for younger children in the area, using their new equipment.
As a reward for those taking part, The Shack organised a fun evening and trip to North Yorkshire’s Forbidden Corner.
Taking pride in the place, where they live
Jennie Potter, Team Leader, said: “It’s a way of encouraging young people to take pride in the place, where they live – and pride in themselves.
“It’s important to show these young people that they have something important to offer the world as well as the place, where they live.”
Ultimately, the summer programme will be self-sustaining. Improving the allotments will give the young people a structure and focus for the rest of the summer holidays.
Plans to build a clubhouse on the site will give young people somewhere to go during future holidays.
Longer term, produce grown at the allotments will be donated to local residents or given to the Community Grocery.
The PCC’s ASB Fund was supported by money raised from the Police Property Act Fund (PAF.)