A church has been awarded more than £32,000 to let youngsters learn about the people who helped make their town what it is today.
Whitefriars Church in Rushden has been given a grant of £32,200 by the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF).
It will allow them to run a three-year project for young people to research key figures from the town’s history over the last 150 years, such as Victoria Cross recipient Bernard Vann.
The project will start in July this year, with young people starting their interviews and investigations in September.
The church’s vicar, the Revd Philip Evans, said: “We are delighted to have been granted this prestigious award.
“We want to give young people in Rushden the chance to discover more about their remarkable heritage, develop pride in their town and its history, and therefore grow in confidence that they too can achieve great things.”
The project will see Whitefriars Church working in partnership with the history department at Rushden Community College and with Rushden and District History Society.
It will link in with Whitefriars’s community youth work project, Access All Areas, which aims to give young people opportunities to grow in self-esteem and self-confidence, and have access to all areas of life.
Head of the Heritage Lottery East Midlands, Vanessa Harbar, welcomed the project, and said: “HLF is delighted to play our part in enabling this project; it offers a great opportunity for the young people involved to learn new skills and develop confidence and understanding of their local heritage. We look forward to their findings.”
During the past 10 years, Whitefriars Church has developed its Access All Areas scheme, which has become the largest provider of youth work based in East Northamptonshire.
The church has worked with and been funded by local authorities, schools, and local charities to deliver projects for young people which helps them grow in confidence and self-esteem.
For the past eight years it has worked with Rushden Community College to run projects in mentoring, anti-bullying, transition from Year 6 to Year 7, leadership development and making wise choices in relationships.
The church is looking to recruit a project officer, which comes with a £7,000 salary for 15 hours’ work per week. Contact Sharon Clarke at Whitefriars Church on 01933 412785 or firstname.lastname@example.org for the job description and application form.