A brand-new set of wheels thanks to Children in Need will now enable North Devon youth workers to help even more young people.
The Junction Project, part of homeless charity Encompass Southwest, has received funding from the BBC’s Children in Need appeal for the 13th consecutive year.
But in addition to that, this year it has also received £41,000 from the Youth Investment Fund, part of CiN, to buy a brand-new camper van to serve as a mobile drop-in centre all around North Devon.
It means youth workers can go out to more remote communities to engage with young people and offer help and advice on arrange of issues, as well as a hot or cold drink and a sympathetic ear.
It is also hoped the charity will be able to take the custom van to a variety of local summer festivals this year.
The Junction Project helps young people at risk of becoming homeless but also offers advice of staying safe, drug and alcohol issues, sexual health or if anyone is having difficulties with relationships at home.
Youth worker James Moss said the van also carried some useful supplies to help people in crisis, such as sleeping bags and essentials.
He said: “The van is an amazing resource for us and will enable us to reach more young people across northern Devon.
“It’s a great addition to our outreach work, making us more visual and also gives us a proper drop-in centre and base to work from, rather than simply turning up in our own cars.”
Encompass Southwest CEO added: “This funding gives us an amazing opportunity to go out and engage with young people who may be hard to reach due to living in rural communities with a lack of transport.
“Our advisers will be on hand to offer them confidential advice and support on any number of different issues they may be facing.
“We are so pleased to be successful with this funding bid because opportunities like this do not come along very often and it will make a real difference to young people in northern Devon.”
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