Lottery grant helps vulnerable youngsters get out of lockdown

SPORT and creative art can play a big part in keeping young people out of trouble, so North Staffordshire is blessed to have the backing of an organisation like Sporting Communities. The group, founded in 2012, targets vulnerable youngsters, developing their social action ideas to create change in the community. Though the coronavirus pandemic has put group meetings on hold, because of social distancing, the youngsters are being kept busy at home putting together podcasts on 'Life During Lockdown'. The M-Y-Voice (Mobile Youth Voice) project has been given a big boost with generous National Lottery funding of £395,000. It is a share of £600 million donated by the lottery to help groups most hit by the pandemic, which support some of the most vulnerable people in our communities. Sporting Community operates across Biddulph, Leek and Cheadle, using sport and creative art to connect with young people, but youngsters have now swapped their sports kit for headphones to continue their exciting new challenge. Ben Rigby, of Sporting Communities, said: "Thanks to National Lottery funding we were, prior to coronavirus, able to provide activities for young people across the Moorlands, North Staffs and Derbyshire via sport and creative arts. "We wanted, indeed, we had to stay connected with these young people and after chatting with many we identified issues they were facing and the tools we could use. "We have taight ourselves how to use things like Zoom and even create podcasts. "It's amazing what you can do if you put your mind to it and the feedback has been great. So we are still delivering a service, albeit different."


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