16th Sep, 2019

Community groups unite to help children thanks to funding

Sarah Mason 27th Jun, 2018

FOUR community groups have joined forces to help children and young people in north Solihull thanks to £600,000-worth of funding.

Solihull Life Opportunities (SoLO), Gro-Organic, Urban Heard and Meridan Adventure Playground Association have come together to form Youth Adventure Synergy (YAS).

The money came from the Youth Investment Fund, which is jointly funded by the government’s department for digital, culture, media and sport and the Big Lottery Fund, using money raised by National Lottery players.

The YAS Partnership is based at Meridan Adventure Playground which, through the power of community action, remained open despite threats of closure in 2017 and aims to develop resilience in young people.

Through the YAS initiative young people from north Solihull have the opportunity to get involved in building, marketing, paid work or they can just go and build fires, chop wood or fly through the sky with the playground’s swings, platforms and climbing frames.

On top of this, SoLO said it will grow the current programmes for children and young people with disabilities supported by specialist workers and volunteers.

Janet Down, CEO of SoLO and the lead organisation in YAS, said: “This is a really exciting programme to be apart of.

“It is no accident that we have chosen synergy in our partnership name because we have already seen the benefits of working together and this is just the beginning.

“We are hugely grateful to the Colebridge Trust, The Volunteer Infrastructure Organisation in Solihull, for their support in the bid writing stage.”

Dawn Austwick, chief executive of the Big Lottery Fund, said: “This funding will help provide more opportunities for young people to build their confidence, discover new talents and reach their potential.

“It will be great to see young people getting involved in the design of these activities, making sure they reflect what matters to them and their lives.”

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