A local company has been working with young people in relation to safety issues they face, thanks to Community Safety funding from the Housing Executive.
4Rs Recycling secured the funding to tackle difficult issues, personal and generational matters, initiating better awareness and making a difference for the whole community.
This project was aimed at young people specifically to get them talking about issues that affected them and their personal safety. It was also about understanding their perception of older people, and how other people in their communities felt about the younger generation.
Regular workshops, linked with learning new skills under the company ethos of 4Rs - Reduce, Reuse, Recycle and Re-skill – has enabled the participants to become more confident and have a better understanding of the world around them.
The project ran for 25 weeks, helping 52 participants to overcome their own issues and appreciate the help and support they can reach out to in the own areas. Joe Brolly, Manager at 4Rs Recycling, works closely with the local community and finds working with young people very rewarding. He said: “Thanks to the Housing Executive’s Community Safety funding, we are helping young people understand pe rsonal safety and its impact on society.”
Mr Brolly said the project has proved “really successful” in tackling different issues while at the same time building community confidence and “making people more aware of their own neighbourhoods”.
Collon Terrace Housing Executive local manager, Joanna O’Boyce, attended the celebratory event with students who participated from Ardnashee College and said she was impressed with the skilled young people. “The Housing Executive will always look to support local communities and improve residents’ wellbeing. This community safety project has been an excellent tool for creating self-awareness in our young people, and the additional skills they learn will contribute to a safer, healthier community. Well done to everyone involved,” she said.
For the past six years, the 4Rs project in Pennyburn has been taking unwanted and discarded furniture and electrical items and upcycling them before selling them on. The social enterprise initiative has also trained up hundreds of local people in the process, among them school leavers, those who can’t find work and people with disabilities. The organisation also runs a New 2 You furniture shop beside Pennyburn Recycling Centre which is open to the public Monday to Thursday 9am to 4.30pm and Friday 9am to 4pm.