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Let Me Play’s outreach projects are community oriented projects which aim to make a significant impact on the areas in which they operate. Our hope is to get as many young people to join our cause as possible so that we may make the greatest possible difference in each individual community.
Our current and former programmes are detailed below with case studies. Our current programmes include:
1. Reparation Programmes for Youth Offenders (Hammersmith & Fulham). 2. Positive Activities for Disadvantaged Youth (Camden). 3. Sports and Activity Holiday Provision for (Hammersmith & Fulham). 4. Sports and Education Programmes for NEETs (All of London).
Let Me Play became the biggest sports and activity provider for a pilot project in the London Boroughs of Camden and Tower Hamlets.
In 2008, Let Me Play took on a pilot project for the Department of Children, Schools and Families (DCSF) in Camden and Tower Hamlets. The pilot project which became known as the COO-L project (Choice and Opportunities On-Line) was a part of the overall Empowering Young People Pilots (EYPP) which was part of the DCSF’s ten year youth strategy for positive activities, published in July 2007.
The aim of the EYPP was to make funds available so that the most disadvantaged young people across nine pilot areas could access positive activities. The areas covered were; Camden, Tower Hamlets, Lincolnshire, Liverpool, Nottingham, Durham, Bolton and Sunderland.
How the pilot project worked
Young people did not have direct access to the funds; instead they were given a mechanism whereby they could access the activity using funds paid directly to the provider of an activity. In Camden and Tower Hamlets, young people were provided with virtual credit which ranged from £20 - £40 which they were able to spend on a range of activities or transport costs. Target groups were young people in Years 9 to 12 from low-income families who were in receipt of Free School Meals (FSM), looked after children (LAC), and in some of the areas, included other groups such as young carers.
Once we had agreed to work with the local authorities on the COO-L project, we soon became the biggest provider of sports and activities with over 10,000 contact hours with young people and a presence across eight schools in both London Boroughs including work with Parliament Hill, South Camden, Achland Burghley, Hampstead and Haverstock Schools providing breakfast clubs, lunch games clubs and after school clubs.
To date, we have worked with over 4,000 young people, offering a wide variety of sports and activities as part of the project including trips to Thorpe Park and Chessington World of Adventures, Cinema Club, Fashion Design Classes, Make-Up Classes, trips to the London Dungeon and the London Eye, Street Dance Classes, Diving Lessons and a Table Tennis Club to name but a few. These activities provided the young people with the opportunities to make use of their credit, engage with a variety of different sports and activities whilst also having fun with friends.
Following a report into the impact on education engagement and the success of the projects, there were some key findings presented. In some of the schools in one of these areas, where the EYPP activities were used as an incentive to encourage school attendance, there was evidence from teachers that some of the EYPP young people were truanting less frequently and were handing in their homework on time. School staff in another area observed that some young people were more engaged with their learning and said they might feel differently about their futures. There was also evidence that the EYPP significantly increased young people’s participation, with the Camden area seeing a 74% increase in participation following activities or a school trip.
There have been a great range of benefits that have come from the pilot projects; most young people (70 per cent) said that the EYPP had enabled them to participate in at least one activity that they would not have otherwise done. One young person said EYPP meant, ‘doing more stuff, getting fit and meeting people’. Another young person said that,‘…getting out more helps and makes you happier…It’s been fun having it’.
Parents of young people who had engaged in physical activities such as boxing or going to the gym said their children had lost weight and were healthier and had increased well-being. It’s also seen benefits in helping to avoid anti-social behaviour in local communities: ‘It has got a lot of people off the streets, a lot of parents have been ringing up saying this is a lifesaver for their children it has got them off the streets, kept them out of trouble, it’s positive’.
Such was the overall success of the pilot project; Let Me Play signed a contract with the London Borough of Camden to provide sports and activities to young people until March 2011.
Let Me Play became the biggest sports and activity provider for a pilot project in the London Boroughs of Camden and Tower Hamlets. In 2008, Let Me Play took on a pilot project for the Department of Children, Schools and Families (DCSF) in Camden and Tower Hamlets.
Over the past 12 months Let Me Play has delivered a significant amount of work within the London Borough of Hammersmith & Fulham. Being the borough where our office is based makes this a natural fit for the organisation to try and create a positive impact in the local area; this has allowed for a co-ordinated approach to engaging with young people and the community. Such comprehensive work allows for lots of communities to be touched by Let Me Play activities and the associated benefits.
Over the last 6 months, Let Me Play has developed, implemented and delivered a youth re-offending prevention project as part of the Youth Crime Action Plan (YCAP).
The youth crime action plan is a comprehensive, cross-government analysis of what the government is going to do to tackle youth crime. It sets out a 'triple track' approach of enforcement and punishment where behaviour is unacceptable, non-negotiable support, challenges where it is most needed, and provides better and earlier prevention.
In July and August 2010, Let Me Play ran 15 "Do it 4 Real" (Di4R) Summer Camps for the Youth Hostel Association (YHA).
The YHA camps aim to reach out and enhance the lives of all young people. They operate a network of more than 200 Youth Hostels, bunkhouses and camping barns across England and Wales. On behalf of the YHA, we will be delivering 15 Di4R summer camps: