The Police and Crime Commissioner for Essex is helping fund the work of The Prince’s Trust to turn young people’s lives around and provide hope and opportunity.
The Prince’s Trust has a proven track record of helping young people, some of whom may be vulnerable, to realise their potential. The PCC has granted £27,000 to The Prince’s Trust through the Community Safety Development Fund, to work in partnership with Essex Youth Service and Thurrock Council to support the intensive 12 week Team programme. This programme is designed to help build confidence and motivation in young people to prepare them for employment and to help prevent vulnerability towards crime.
The programme is run by a local delivery team across Essex and recruits young people from the following target areas: Basildon, Colchester, Harlow, Southend–On–Sea, Tendring and Thurrock. The project also benefits from private sector match funding.
The most recent 12 week Team programme included a focus on community projects and saw the young people working together with a shelter for the homeless, helping to paint the building. There were also trips to build team skills and motivation, and plenty of sessions helping to prepare for the workplace including work experience, mock interviews and CV writing. Week 4 saw the group focus on fundraising, setting up a charity car wash for local residents with all proceeds being donated to the local homeless charity, CHESS.
The Team programme aims to ensure that 60 per cent of the participants will move into a positive outcome, reducing the risk of them entering or re-entering the criminal justice system or behaving anti-socially.
Sam, the Team Leader for the programme, said: “I have been involved with the Positive Steps Programme for 18 months now and have seen four different groups graduate from the scheme. I believe the scheme helps creates positive steps for young vulnerable individuals and have seen young people change their lives around. When you meet the individuals on Day One it is amazing to seeing them graduate in week 12. We work closely with Mental Health teams and probation, following through all referrals to help youths receive the support they need.”
Paul, one of the participants on the scheme, said: “My favourite part of the project was when I worked with the CHESS Homeless organisation because I was able to help people in the community who don’t necessarily receive much other help. The programme overall has made me feel more positive about life in general and I think I am going to apply for an apprenticeship, which I would never have thought of doing before I began the programme.”
Lindsay Whitehouse, Deputy PCC for Essex, said: “The motto of The Prince’s Trust is Inspiring Young Lives, and the work I’ve seen is inspirational. I was delighted to attend and speak at the most recent graduation ceremony. I spoke with many of the young people and it was clear that their participation in the programme had changed some of their attitudes and given them fresh confidence for the future.”
To find out more about the Community Safety Development Fund Please click here.
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