Enagh Youth Forum (EYF) has stated that despite the successes of 2015, Strathfoyle residents must continue to work towards the full implementation of the Strathfoyle Action Plan 2015-2020.
Strathfoyle received good news towards the end of 2015 when Derry City and Strabane District Council (DCSDC) announced that they would make funding available to develop a children’s play park in the area.
“Through working together all local groups came up with a plan that is community led and uses a bottom up approach,” said Paul Hughes from EYF.
“We have provided senior council officers and all local elected representatives with a copy of the plan and meet monthly to review progress.
“Just 12 months from the creation of the plan and many positive things have happened. These include a commitment from Council to fund the much needed play park, it is expected that the park will be built and opened by Spring 2017.
“Work is ongoing in relation to sourcing funds to develop the Greenway Extension out to Strathfoyle and to support the development of a Multi Use Sports Area locally all of which have long been identified by local residents as key projects for the area and all of which will go some way in tackling rural isolation and social exclusion,” added Mr. Hughes.
Mr. Hughes said that one of the most challenging tests for the local community will take place when trying to protect services in the area and called for all groups to work together as much as possible.
“Crucial to the success of our community plan is sustaining all existing services and in the current economic climate and in times of austerity it is becoming more and more difficult and therefore essential for all local groups to support each other and strengthen partnership working.”
Mr. Hughes went on to say that the successes of 2015 would not have been realised had it not been for community cohesion and altruism.
“The attendance of so many residents and young people at the community engagement events was a great source of encouragement,” he said.
“We hope local people feel that they have ownership of this plan and many thanks also to all the statutory organisations, local council and the local community organisations whose support made this possible.
“Now, one year on we wish to acknowledge and thank everyone who has contributed to the plan for both their energy, willingness and participation and we looks forward to continuing this work in 2016,” he said.