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At their celebration ceremony in Fermanagh House, the Youth Bank team awarded grants to three innovative projects totalling over £3000.
The Fermanagh Trust established Youth Bank, working in partnership with Youth Action NI to build leadership, allocate resources to youth based initiatives, meet real community need and tackle issues of direct importance to young people here. The Youth Bank became the grant makers, with direct involvement in the research, planning and decision making.
Youth Bank member Dwayne Lyons said “This has been a fantastic experience. It has been an intense process but we’ve really enjoyed it and gained a lot from it. Personally I’ve taken a lot from being part of Youth Bank and developed a number of skills. Thanks to the Fermanagh Trust for the experience and encouragement. Also congratulations to the successful applicants. There are a number of great projects which will surely make a positive impact on Fermanagh”.
First to receive their grant award were the Senior Youth Group from Carrosyl Community Association who will use their grant towards their project ‘Breaking Barriers’. This summer they will receive LGBT awareness training and build a relationship with an LGBT group which will help Carrosyl support their LGBT peers as well as identifying and challenging stereotypes. ‘Breaking Barriers’ aims to challenge homophobia, bullying and discrimination towards the LGBT community, while making Carrosyl a safer and more inclusive environment.
Also supported was the cross community drama group ‘KEY Drama’. Their grant will be used to create a DVD resource pack, addressing the issues and concerns of transitioning from primary to secondary school. The group of young people from throughout Fermanagh will create a performance, a piece of issue based drama filmed and used with Year 7 and Year 8s to help them cope with this stressful time. KEY Drama hope this long term resource will benefit not only young people but also parents, family and teachers to gain a better understanding about the transition period.
Finally Extern, were awarded support for their project ‘Artastic’. The group will redecorate an area of Erne Family Centre using art and plants chosen by the group to give a personal touch and create a place to relax, de-stress and enjoy with their peers. Erne Family Centre is a facility which is limited for space and catering for a large volume of young people. The project provides an opportunity to be creative in designing a space for relaxation benefiting the mental health all who use the Centre.
Lauri McCusker, Director of the Fermanagh Trust said “We were delighted to once again support Youth Back and we look forward to doing it again next year. The young people were great to work with, totally embracing the concept and taking ownership of the process, developing a range of skills and experience. Ultimately, thanks to their involvement and their ideas, they have provided local organisations with much needed funding for projects that surely make a difference for Fermanagh’s young people. This is a model that bigger organisations need to follow. Listen to the young people because they know themselves what their key needs and priorities are”