Equality and Diversity – The underpinning principle of our project is promoting understanding and respect for cultural diversity. Accepting differences but also identifying similarities, with a strong emphasis on cohesion. This theme runs through all our activities.
Supportive Relationships – To inspire young people and empower them to get involved in community activities, experience social diversity make decisions that affect them.
Strong Ambitions – To work towards developing young people’s confidence, so that they are comfortable with their own identities, are able to make good decisions and develop positive leadership skills, so that they make a positive contribution to society whilst gaining recognition.
Good Opportunities – We want our young people to have the best chance at life by supporting them to take part in various activities and encourage them to develop skills through volunteering, planning, delivering and evaluating activities. To encourage young people to value both traditional and vocational education in order to gain confidence.
Positive Media Portrayals – We recognise that young people are misrepresented by the media; therefore we enable young people to challenge misrepresentations and perceptions by representing themselves in a positive fashion through social media.
The Bridge Project was established in August 2002 with assistance from the Children’s Fund. It merged with Building Bridges in Burnley in 2007. The project focuses on bringing young people aged 8-18 together from different faith and cultural backgrounds as well as:
- Working with and in schools and supporting the school curriculum
- Arranging activities during the school holidays and weekends
- Delivering an After School Club and a newly formed Junior Group
- Organising residential weekends and Diversity Days
We continue to deliver projects to young people during the 18 week school project, youth sessions and holiday activities, in line with Every Child Matters and have placed a greater emphasis on Safeguarding Children and Young People. Assemblies are more focused on the needs of pupils, with reference to feedback from schools and are now based on cultural diversity and making informed choices. The Duke of Edinburgh work has been well received and is currently over-subscribed, especially due to cutbacks in statutory provision.
The project has been recognised as a driver for change across the town. We have worked in partnership with organisations such as the Young People’s Service, Lancashire Fire and Rescue and the NHS. We continue to receive requests for partnership working and hope to network with public sector agencies. More schools have shown interest in our project, however at this particular time, due to the constraints on resources, we are unable to meet the demand. We have also twinned schools inBurnleywith schools outside of the town, i.e. Fleetwood.
Our future plans for the coming year are to deliver all our targets and develop the sustainability of the project. We have successfully applied for funding to carry out an evaluation of the project, which is now underway and will be completed by September 2012. It is hoped that this evaluation will highlight the value of the project and aid in applying for future funds.
St Andrew’s Church Hall
Duke Bar, Burnley
Tel: 01282 458383
Funded by the Big Lottery and the Henry Smith Foundation