Sinn Féin Waterside councillor Christopher Jackson has called for urgent action to be taken in order for the youth facilities within the grounds Immaculate Conception College to be opened to the public.
Speaking to the Journal Councillor Jackson said:
“During the summer the building was partially damaged in a fire and essential repairs are being carried out to bring the facility up to fire safety standards.
“I have been in contact with WELB over a number of weeks who have assured me that the repair work being carried out has been prioritised.
“The reality on the ground is that sporting groups such as Top of the Hill Celtic and Na Piarsaigh Doire Trasna as well as the youth club rely on these facilities and haven’t been able to start up since the summer break.”
He added: “The whole community is suffering as a result, with children eager to get back to training after the holidays. There is now a real danger that the local clubs could potentially suffer as the children start to go elsewhere. And then there is the added expense of transport to get to other area of the city.
“For an area with a very young population, youth facilities are essential and coming into the dark nights there is a real danger that a gap in youth provision could lead to an increase in antisocial behaviour. “I would like to praise the work of youth workers who are currently forced to take children out of the area to run any programs, and I would like to ask parents to be patient as we hope to have the situation resolved as soon as possible.”