Trio of grants fund children's play

Youngsters have enjoyed a summer of fun thanks to donations to a youth group by three South Kesteven councillors.

Youngsters have enjoyed a summer of fun thanks to donations to a youth group by three South Kesteven councillors.

The money has met the expense of an additional youth worker providing summer holiday activities at Elsea Park Youth Club for children from Bourne and the surrounding area.

Cllrs Duncan Ashwell, Jane Kingman and Robert Reid, all of Bourne Austerby, together funded half of the £2,000 required for their South Kesteven District Council Ward Member Grants, with Elsea Park Community Trust paying the rest.

Cllr Ashwell, a former board member, said: "The summer holiday club engages with local youngsters and keeps them occupied on activity sessions three days a week, and we're very happy to be able to contribute.

"The group has proved very popular and the extra staff helped meet a growing demand."

Cllr Kingman added: "As well as keeping the children happy there's the added benefit of alleviating any boredom and reducing anti-social behaviour. The club previously supported 20 children but this year has been able to welcome many more."

Cllr Reid said: "Elsea Park Community Trust is fully-funded by residents of the Elsea Park development and provides community facilities for the whole of Bourne. The summer youth club is just part of its varied work supporting local residents and I'm pleased we can help out."

Elsea Park Community Trust is responsible for several public open spaces and play areas, and owns a large community building in which the youth group, under Niki Szwed, is based.

Summer youth activities included pizza and cake making, rock painting, sports challenges, science events, a pool contest, pamper session, slime-making, barbecues and discos.

Finance and Administration Officer for the Trust, Bea Laidler, said youth worker Chloe Pagan helped build the group of older children from next to nothing to around 30 members in a matter of months.

She added: "It's more than just a youth club. It's a social thing where the youngsters can talk about any issues they have either at school or at home. By taking them off the streets it also helps prevent anti-social behaviour."

As well as the community centre, there's also a large green area where people can play outside and a hard basketball area. The club has bought new rounders kit and also set up indoor curling.

Picture caption: (From left) Elsea Park Community Trust Finance and Administration Officer Bea Laidler, SKDC Councillor Robert Reid, Youth Worker Chloe Pagan, SKDC Councillor Jane Kingman, SKDC Councillor Duncan Ashwell and Youth Support Worker Niki Szwed.

Elsea park grant

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