Environment Minister Mark H Durkan visited with representatives of one of Derry’s best known community youth groups on Thursday.
Members of the Youth Forum met with the minister at Enagh Lough. The purpose of the visit was to discuss the benefits of the Challenge Fund project which earlier this year saw a number of environmental improvement works take place in and around Enagh Lough. This included a Bird Box Challenge Day, Tree Planting events and family volunteering days in partnership with Strathfoyle Library and the Conservation Volunteers NI. Enagh Youth Forum hope to build on the success of this project and will be re-applying to the Challenge Fund when it re-opens in 2015.
Young people from the ‘Enagh Break Out Project’ also completed a pride of place litter pick to coincide with the minister’s visit.
Nathan, a member of Enagh Youth Forum explained to the minister that there is a great need for changing room provision at Enagh Lough giving the number of groups and schools who now use the Lough for canoeing and kayaking. Nathan said: “I have already completed my Star One Kayaking Cert and I am currently in the process of completing my Star Two Cert, many of the skills needed be learnt here at Enagh, and I think it would be great if changing rooms here could be provided here by Derry City Council some time soon.”
Paul Hughes from Enagh Youth Forum said: “It was great to connect and engage with the minister and hopefully he will continue to highlight Enagh Lough as a great natural resource for the local community and for everyone in Derry to utilise for team building, raft building and canoeing and kayaking. Enagh Lough is an area of great historical, environmental and leisure and amenity value and its important we all work together to ensure it reaches it’s full potential.”