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Young people encouraged to ‘Give it a Go’ with Power NI funding

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Sandy Row based youth initiative, L.A.D. Talk, is one of ten groups across Northern Ireland to receive a £1000 Power NI Brighter Communities funding package to enhance the lives of local people and better prepare them for a more positive future

Launched during the latter part of 2020, the Brighter Communities £10K funding pot was designed to help ten community, sporting, charity, youth and all age groups bring their projects to life and help regenerate their local area.

An integral part of Belfast South Community Resources (BSCR), L.A.D. Talk was set up by qualified teacher and youth co-ordinator Jonny Simms over two years ago. It aims to help young people aged 15 to 24 develop their potential and confidence through participating in educational, business and sporting activities.

“L.A.D. stands for ‘Lads Against Depression’ but of course it’s open to girls as well as young men” explained founder and BSCR staff member Jonny Simms.

“We wanted to give young people in the Sandy Row community a chance to try really different activities that they wouldn’t have previously thought about, thereby helping them to chat through the challenges and opportunities in daily life, work and the community."

“Our Power NI £1000 award will be used to set up ‘Give it a Go Wellbeing Days’ which could be anything from outdoor activities such as rock climbing to golf lessons or more business focussed sessions such as 3D printing or laser cutting.”

Power NI which this year marks its 90th anniversary, first introduced the Brighter Communities initiative back in April 2018. Since then it has supported a huge range of bespoke groups and clubs from wheelchair basketball, beekeepers, vintage cyclists and young cheerleaders to street soccer, dragon racers, Early Years and stroke recovery groups.

Congratulating Jonny and the team at L.A.D. Talk, Gemma-Louise Bond, Senior Sponsorship & Events Executive at Power NI said, “It’s been inspirational meeting Jonny and seeing the work that he does with young people helping to change lives for the better. With the continuing impact of COVID-19 these type of initiatives are even more important for safeguarding the futures of local communities and their people.”

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