An award-winning scheme for youngsters in Corby has been given more than £171,000 by the Big Lottery Fund.
The Big Lottery announced yesterday that more than £51 million will be shared among voluntary sector organisations to help improve their local communities and the lives of people most in need.
Among those receiving a cash boost is the Jam Indoors project, which is part of Groundwork Northamptonshire and will be run by the Jam team.
The Jam team was set up by Ann-Marie Lawson and Julie Mead in 2006 after concerns about the level of anti-social behaviour and criminal damage in Corby.
Its team of youth workers work 365 days a year and deliver a wide range of services to young people across Northamptonshire.
When Corby’s Connaughty Centre closed down, people said they had nowhere to go so following consultation with youngsters, the idea of the Jam Indoors project came about.
The Big Lottery funding will be used in the Central and Kingswood wards of Corby to provide somewhere where youngsters can be part of clubs and projects like they were at the Connaughty Centre.
Youngsters will not only be involved in the decision-making process, but also with the interview process for two new youth workers.
Applications are being sought for two 18.5 hour posts created by Jam Indoors.
Youth programme manager for Groundwork Northamptonshire and the Jam team Kimberley Lawson said: “We are thrilled once again to have been successful in giving young people what they have asked for.
“We are really excited about the opportunity to continue to progress young people to be respected members of their communities.”
The project has been given £171,300 for the next three years.
Ward councillor for Kingswood and Hazel Leys John McGhee said: “This is a fantastic result for a fantastic team.”
He praised the team for helping young people and making communities better places for everyone to live together, and added: “Their reputation precedes them and I have no doubt this will be a great project.”
Lyn Cole, Big Lottery Fund England grant making director, said: “So many local community organisations are enabling people and communities to grow together bringing positive changes to their lives and futures.
“It’s wonderful to hear the stories of how through these great projects people have overcome barriers, learned new skills and improved their lives.”
The Jam team is aimed at young people aged 13 to 17 who are involved in or at risk of being involved in anti-social behaviour and low level criminality.
The programme works with them in target hotspot areas and uses various ways, including sport, drama, music, art and dance, to engage them in activities that meet their needs and expectations.
Jam team partners include Northamptonshire Police, Corby Council, Corby’s town centre manager Dan Pickard and Groundwork Northamptonshire.
Sector inspector for Corby Julie Mead said she was very excited about the cash boost and can’t wait to see it making a difference for youngsters in Corby.
The money awarded to the Jam team has been made through the Big Lottery Fund’s Awards for All and Reaching Communities programmes.