Over the past few months, our Milltown Dreamscheme group was engaged in a new project called "Survive to Thrive", funded by Belfast City Council's Police & Community Safety Partnership. This included a series of workshops and activities based around the prevention of anti-social behavior in the Milltown/Belvoir Areas.
Aims of the project
- Increased awareness of the criminal justice system
- Increased awareness of anti-social behavior and some of the consequences that can follow
- Increased motivation to participate in positive community activities
- Improved relationships between young people and senior citizens
As part of this project our young people participated in 11 different workshops.
Local Police Officers Sam and Kathy stopped by to chat to our young people about anti-social behaviour in the local area, and they highlighted some of the consequences that can come as a result in engaging in anti-social behaviour.
The Police Response Team also came in with many different pieces of equipment, which our young people were able to try on and use. The Team explained to the young people their role in the force and some of the lengths they go to in order to ensure the safety of the public.
The young people also had a workshop based around the dangers of drugs and alcohol in society. The workshop focused around identifying the most common substances found in Belfast and showing their negative effects on people and communities.
Activities and educational visits
As part of the Survive to Thrive Project, our young people enjoyed a visit to Musgrave Police Station in Belfast City Centre. They received an access-all-areas tour of the facilities and gained a valuable insight into how the Police keep track of what is going on in the city. One of the highlights was seeing the CCTV room, where the young people found out how the Police monitor many different areas of Belfast at the same time.
Another part of the Project was encouraging young people to take up hobbies and pursue different interests, instead of engaging in anti-social behaviour. This included putting the young people through their paces in a football tournament in Belvoir Activity Centre.
Hard work done... now for the trips!
As usual in Dreamscheme, young people enjoyed a number of positive trips as a reward for all their hard work. First off, the group received a guided tour of the National Football Stadium, Windsor Park. The young people learned about the history of the Northern Irish game, and even managed to take a few penalties against a virtual Pat Jennings. After this, the group went to Need 4 Speed go-karting in Doagh, with McKenzie taking home the winner's trophy.