Projects for the young strike gold

Toby Bowley with his creation from a Hands On workshop in the yurt at Adur Outdoor Activities Centre S22516H14
Toby Bowley with his creation from a Hands On workshop in the yurt at Adur Outdoor Activities Centre S22516H14
  • BBC actor pops in to give words of encouragement
  • Adur Pot of Gold 2015 focuses on projects for under-25s
  • Groups vie for votes at Adur Civic Centre
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YOUTH groups and their supporters turned out in force to compete for funding from this year’s Adur Pot of Gold.

The council chamber at Adur Civic Centre was packed last Thursday to hear presentations on projects that will benefit the under-25s in the district.

Ashley Walters, star of the new BBC drama Cuffs and a former member of the band So Solid Crew, popped in to give the young people some encouragement.

“I have had a chequered past,” he admitted, alluding to his time in prison for a firearms offence.

“I have spent a lot of time putting in the effort for what I do. Whether you win or lose, it doesn’t mean that your idea is no good. You should always go on striving for what you believe in.”

Four groups sought funding from the small pot, for projects up to £2,000.

Ashley Walters, star of the new BBC drama Cuffs and a former member of the band So Solid Crew

Ashley Walters, star of the new BBC drama Cuffs and a former member of the band So Solid Crew

Scout leader Teddy Rowe said 1st Sompting Scout Group needed help to buy a mess tent because it was such a small group, its own fundraising efforts would not be enough.

Activ8 for Kids wants to set up a new monthly Junior Parkrun at Lancing Manor Leisure Centre.

Owner Debbie Webb said: “We want to get children active. We are very passionate about it and run a wide range of physical activity sessions across Adur, Worthing and Brighton.”

A healthy smoothie was prepared while Fishersgate Active Grub Club explained how it helps children learn about healthy eating.

I have spent a lot of time putting in the effort for what I do. Whether you win or lose, it doesn’t mean that your idea is no good. You should always go on striving for what you believe in

Ashley Walters, star of the new BBC drama Cuffs

The club has been running for a year, providing free sessions where children prepare the vegetables for a two-course meal then eat it following an outdoor activity.

Mother and daughter Georgina and Madeleine Carter spoke about the toddler group at St Peter’s Roman Catholic Church in Shoreham.

Madeleine said: “It is a safe and caring environment. Playgroups are a great place for children to explore and find their own way.”

Her mum said the toy storage needed replacing and they would also like to buy some new toys, as they had only ever had secondhand ones, donated by parents or from charity shops.

Georgina Carter and her son with the St Peter's RC Church presentation boards

Georgina Carter and her son with the St Peter's RC Church presentation boards

The toddler group meets on Tuesdays, from 9.30am to 11am, at the church, in West Street, Shoreham.

There were a total of 12 applications for funding from the large pot, for projects between £2,001 and £5,000.

Among them were 3rd/5th Lancing Sea Scouts seeking money for equipment, Hands on Community hoping to set up an animation station and Wild Foxes Forest School, which wants to build on its nature sessions in Steyning.

Ten-year-old St Nicolas and St Mary Primary School pupil Esther Wells helped Creative Waves director Vanessa Breen explain the value of school workshops and plans for a postal art trail involving 600 children in September.

Sports groups seeking support included Shoreham Rugby Club and its bid for new posts, Lancing United and Lancing Rangers, who want to upgrade the pitches at Crowshaw Recreation Ground, and Storm Junior Basketball Club, which wanted special equipment to help the smaller players.

David O’Connell, managing director of Original Allstars Music, talked about the new Penhill Project, the group’s new base in Lancing.

He asked for money for instruments and sound recording equipment, which will be used by young people across Adur.

Jacqui Matten, from Sompting Big Local, sought money to revamp the BMX track at Hamble Recreation Ground, as well as create a wildflower garden and quiet space there.

Esteem, which is based in Ham Road, Shoreham, sought money for the youth management team to organise new drop-in evening sessions.

Cat Vizor explained: “We are a charity that provides a platform for young people to help themselves. We help young people to build their confidence, gain life experiences, with references, and help them to find their direction in life.”

Shoreham air cadets Lenny and Harry made a passionate plea for laptops, explaining that training sessions were now available only online and it was the only way the 1440 Squadron could carry on its learning programme.

In each group, three projects were selected for funding according to highest votes. A further project was chosen in the ‘best of the rest’ vote, then it was announced another two would also receive their money.

The only group to miss out on this occasion was Wickers Gymnastics Club, which had wanted £5,000 for a coach education programme.

Adur District Council leader Neil Parkin pointed out that the grant decisions would have to be ratified at a council meeting on June 9.