Don't miss a story sign up to the North Devon Gazette's FREE daily newsletter CLICK HERE

Barnstaple youth centre comes together to protest funding cuts

10:48 22 January 2014

'Georgies' vounteer workers Koren Williams and Kelly Spurway (centre) with young people from the Devon Youth Service

'Georgies' vounteer workers Koren Williams and Kelly Spurway (centre) with young people from the Devon Youth Service

Archant

‘Georgies’ to hold gig to show the value of youth services

YOUNGSTERS at a Barnstaple Youth Centre have organised a special gig to protest against council cuts to youth services.

17-year-old Kelly Spurway and Koren Williams, both volunteer workers at ‘Georgies’ youth centre in St Georges Road, have been working hard with regular users of the centre to set up an event in February for young people concerned about further potential cuts.

Devon County Council has already slashed its budget by £100 million since 2009, and Kelly and Koren fear that Devon Youth Service, which runs the youth centre in Barnstaple, could be vulnerable as the County Council attempts to find another £100 million in savings by 2017.

“We’re putting on an event to show the Government how much the youth service means to people,” said Kelly.

“The number of people involved is growing all the time – we’ve got 10 or 11 acts already signed up and people are coming from other youth centres as far afield as Holsworthy. There’s also more than 20 people involved in helping out.”

Kelly and Koren both became volunteers at the centre after finding help there themselves, and understand the value of the service to those who go there.

“It provides a warm, safe place for people to come and meet their friends and come and talk if they need to,” said Koren. “It’s like a home from home – everyone’s welcome and it offers a break for some people.

“I would invite anyone who wanted to make cuts to come and see our sessions and see what a difference they make. There would be a lot more trouble on the streets if it wasn’t for youth centres.”

The pair also hope to see local councillors at the gig on February 19, although Young Devon’s Andy Smith fears decisions may already have been made.

“It’s about raising that awareness that these things are happening to the youth service,” he said. “To have it run by young people for young people is great.

“Of course I would want it to make a difference but it is so difficult and I would be scared that decisions have already been made.

“I would hope that any decision to make cuts would be reversible.”

In response, Devon County Council stated: “No decision has been made yet about the Devon Youth Service or its budget.

“A major review launched last September sought the views of young people, youth service staff and voluntary sector organisations, to help the council make sure that youth services are properly focused on those in greatest need, and ensure that there are better links between youth work and other early help and prevention services. We will be consulting with people again as soon as we have proposals to consider.”

The gig will be held on at ‘Georgies’ on February 19 between 12noon-6pm.

0 comments

Other News Stories

Three vehicles were involved in the collision on the A361 Link Road at the Lake Roundabout in Barnstaple.

Read more
18:27

Police believe the same man could be responsible for four alleged assaults in King Street, Combe Martin

Read more
14:57

Reprieve for Barnstaple charity after grant funding found to continue its work until the end of this year

Read more

It’s Pancake Day on Tuesday, February 28, and we want to know what Devon’s favourite pancake topping is. Sweet, savoury or both? Decide in our poll here...

Read more
10:33

Jason Massos is running the Brighton Marathon for Care for Kids North Devon

Read more
14:01

Enhanced bus service for Roundswell starts on April 10

Read more
09:51

Photographed something special? Send it to our newsroom via our relaunched image sharing website

Read more

Colorseum in Bideford is supporting cancer patients with a new line of treatments, as well as offering free head shaves and donating to local charity, ChemoHero.

Read more
Yesterday, 19:00

‘Don’t leave valuables on display in unattended cars’ police warn North Devon motorists after spate of thefts

Read more

Local Weather

Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 8°C

min temp: 7°C

Most Read News

Useful Links

Advertise in the paper
Submit a Story
Subscribe to the paper
Competitions
North Devon Football League
Order Photos
Family notices
iwitness24
Facebook
Twitter
Google Plus Page
Reader Travel

Family Notices 24

Read Online

Image
Read the North Devon Gazette e-edition E-edition

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter
HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

Local business directory

North Devon's trusted business finder

Find planning applications