At the Durham High Sheriff Awards ’22, some wonderful youth groups took home £2,000 awards.
Hartlepool Young Carers Project
Hartlepool Young Carers Project provides support to children aged five and up who help loved ones with long term illnesses and disabilities. Five hundred young carers have been supported over the last year with activities, access to technology that reduces loneliness, like tablets, and food packages and Christmas gifts for those living in low-income households.
Though the charity helps young people facing serious difficulties, Hartlepool Carers is a place where these young people can laugh, join in and even fundraise to help others in the same boat.
Working in partnership with PFC Trust, young carers and their families and the local community raised over £50,000 to purchase a caravan to enable carers to get a break from their caring role. Their High Sheriff Award of £2,000 will be spent on respite breaks for young carers in need.
STARS Youth and Community CIC
STARS Youth and Community CIC brings together local young people and the local community – and never was this clearer than during the pandemic, when members delivered food and prescriptions and support their local community.
Thankfully, in 2021, activities have started up again for the young people, who have enjoyed ice skating, cooking sessions, trampolining and arts and crafts.
A mini Miners’ Gala was then put on by the young people, as they wanted to understand more about their heritage. The resilience and remarkable attitude of these young people is shown in how they want to spend any award money that they win, with plans to cook and host a special meal for their parents, and a second three-course meal for older people in their community.
Woodshed Workshop is all about creating a positive culture for young people and encouraging them to gain skills and progress into education and employment. The workshop team is like a second family to young people needing support through issues like family trauma, offending and drug use.
Through the pandemic, the project has never flinched away from the huge need for its services, adapting to keep going however possible. Young people find the support they need to turn a corner and make amends with the local community and leave with a sense of pride in their skills and achievements in the workshop. Their High Sheriff Award will go towards a more accessible bench saw for the workshop where so many change their lives for the better.
Durham Community Boxing Club
Durham Community Boxing Club uses the sport of boxing to improve life chances for young people facing serious challenges. Nine sessions are back up and running each week post-pandemic, again offering local boys and girls the chance to train, eat a good meal and learn skills essential for a good life.
Some of the young people who use the club have been at risk of going down the wrong path, but the club and the trusted adults who run it provide a better way for these young people to find meaning and excitement, opening sessions up to children from residential schools who have been through abuse and poor mental health. Their £2,000 prize which they plan to spend on much-needed equipment and sessions.