Belfast Telegraph

Community groups use £6k for diversionary schemes

by Michael Bashford

Newtownabbey Community Safety Partnership has confirmed that funding of £6,000 has been distributed to groups across the borough and is currently being used in a wide range of ‘summer splash’ events.

Handled by the community safety unit, the focus for the splash programmes have once again been on promoting diversionary activities in areas which suffer the highest levels of anti-social behaviour over the summer period.

Councillor Robert Hill said the Community Safety Partnership had worked closely with colleagues in the PSNI, North Eastern Education and Library Board and community sector to determine what was planned for the many groups who would avail of the funding, where gaps existed and what could be delivered that would make a difference in the areas most affected by anti-social behaviour.

“We all notice the difference over the summer months when the schools are closed and there is a high demand for activities to keep children and young people occupied,” Mr Hill said. “Unfortunately in some areas of the borough the level of anti-social behaviour becomes significant over the summer, which impacts negatively on the quality of life for residents in those areas.

“We hope the programme which we have agreed for Monkstown/Whiteabbey, Mayfield, North End (Ballyclare) and Queen’s Park/Elmfield will go some way towards alleviating this problem and provide an exciting and entertaining alternative for young people.”

The programme has been developed in conjunction with key groups in each of the selected areas and builds upon their experience of what works well within their community.

Young people who have signed up have been taking part in a wide range of activities from cheerleading to skating and It’s a Knockout competitions.

The Newtownabbey groups, who have been running different events throughout July and August, will finish their programmes at the end of the month.

For further information contact Wendy Donaldson on telephone 028 9034 0009.

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