Julian Wadsworth, community resilience co-ordinator for the Bay area at Community Action Isle of Wight, has seen boxing, boxercise and self-defence classes put on at The Heights in Sandown for the young people of the Bay area.
The funding for Community Action’s youth project came from the National Lottery fund’s Energise Me.
Classes are free and open to those educated or living in Sandown and Lake, with classes run for boys, aged 10-13 years old, and young men from 14-18 years old, and one class run for young women aged 10-18 years old. Awards have been set up for those taking part, with milestones where they get assessed, gaining certificates and medals.
Some of the older youths are also being assessed for young leaders to see if they can go on a one-day tutor programme, where they will then be able to return to the class to help deliver to the 10-13 year olds.
Julian said: “The funder, Energise Me, was very flexible to allow us to do what we call Detached Youth Work – so that’s youth workers in the open spaces, on the streets, talking to young people and also develop a youth forum.
“I think our next step is to lever in some resources that can focus a little bit more on some targeted work, so working closely with the policing team and youth offending service and other partners to identify those young people that trigger initial concerns around risk taking and vulnerability.
More information on the programme can be found online, at https://bit.ly/IWOfreeclasses.