THE ABERGELE Youth Shed welcomed Police Commissioner Andy Dunbobbin this week as they gave an insight into the project being undertaken.

The team behind the shed, Abergele Community Action (ACA), were awarded £2,500 from the Commissioner’s ‘Your Community, Your Choice’ fund to enable them to provide a programme of outdoor activities for five groups of 15 young people over a period of 12 months.

Mr Dunbobbin was welcomed by Linda Tavernor a Trustee of Abergele Community Action, and was joined by PCSO Kerri-Lea Adams of North Wales Police.

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Abergele Community Action’s work with young people addresses the root causes of offending and the Youth Shed provides a space that the young people can call their own.

The organisation works with young people with challenging behaviour as well as mental and emotional difficulties, activity focuses on those young people aged ten to 25 that are – or are at risk of becoming – excluded from social, educational and economic opportunities, as well as those that are most at risk of becoming involved in anti-social behaviour and offending.

Every week, through ACA’s programme of activities in the Shed, they engage with 70 to 90 young people aged between ten and 18.

Rhyl Journal: Commissioner Andy Dunbobbin, with PCSO Kerri-Lea Adams, members of Abergele Community Action and young people involved in the initiative.Commissioner Andy Dunbobbin, with PCSO Kerri-Lea Adams, members of Abergele Community Action and young people involved in the initiative.

They deliver a breakfast club, after school clubs and activities throughout the daytime for those young people that are struggling to engage with education.

They have also delivered many outdoor projects including high ropes, raft building, bush craft, mountain walking, and beach combing and have first-hand experience of the effectiveness of this kind of intervention.

Mr Dunbobbin commented: “Young people are our future and projects like Abergele Youth Shed offer local young people the space to learn new skills, manage their emotions and forge new relationships and friendships with their peers and with the wider community.”

“It was clear from my visit that the team at Abergele Community Action are committed to helping the local community, to seeing crime and anti-social behaviour reduced, and to building resilient citizens, who will contribute to their town.

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“It was a pleasure to see their work and to support them through the Your Community, Your Choice fund.”

The Your Community, Your Choice initiative, also supported by the North Wales Police and Community Trust (PACT) and North Wales Police, is in its ninth year.

During this time, more than £400,000 has been handed out to deserving causes and much of it has been recovered through the Proceeds of Crime Act, using money seized from offenders, with the rest coming from the Police and Crime Commissioner.

Linda Tavernor, Trustee, Abergele Community Action said: “Through the work in the Youth Shed, we provide an environment where the young people can have opportunities for social interaction and to express their feelings, emotions and concerns as well as developing strategies for changing their behaviour.

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“Our work supports parents and families, strengthens young people’s skills and builds on emotional and behavioural skills, resulting in increased self-awareness and the ability to resolve conflict and manage behaviour.

“The funding received from the Your Community, Your Choice Fund will enable us to build on our work and contribute to supporting the young people of Abergele.”

ACA is also supported by BBC Children in Need, the National Lottery Community Fund and the Albert Gubay Foundation.

The organisation also works closely with Conwy MIND who provide a mental health practitioner to support some of the activities, providing opportunities for group therapy sessions as well as one to one counselling and active monitoring of young people.