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New Milton Youth Trust gets £10k boost from New Milton Town Council for outreach work

A charity supporting New Milton youngsters has received a £10,000 boost from the town council towards “much-needed” outreach work.

From this month New Milton Youth Trust is launching a programme to help youngsters’ social and emotional development and identify and access any support needed.

The group, set up in 2019 to benefit those aged up to 25, ultimately hopes to carry out building-based youth work and services.

New Milton recreation ground is one of the popular youth hang-out spots on which the workers will focus
New Milton recreation ground is one of the popular youth hang-out spots on which the workers will focus

Councillors on the finance and general purposes committee recently voted unanimously to award the funding from the youth grant aid pot.

Cllr Steve Clarke, a staunch supporter of local youth work, praised the trust for building on a “very good business plan”.

Calling the scheme “absolutely vital”, he said: “They [the trust] know about local young people.”

Welcoming the grant, the trust’s Helen Wallis-Dowling, a former town councillor, said: “We are absolutely delighted to have been awarded this funding so we can roll out much-needed detached youth work.

Helen Wallis-Dowling (picture: Branding by Becky)
Helen Wallis-Dowling (picture: Branding by Becky)

“This will enable our youth workers to meet some of the most vulnerable and marginalised members of the community who don’t currently access building-based services.”

The detached youth workers will go out across New Milton, Ashley and other identified areas to meet youngsters at popular haunts including community sites, parks and cafes.

Helen continued: “It is without a doubt an ambitious project and an exciting new approach for New Milton.

“The funding has been awarded to a local organisation and to benefit young people of our local community.

“From meetings we have had with the Local Children’s Partnership, we know this type of work is much needed in the town and the surrounding areas. We’re really keen to get started and get to know people.”

There will initially be two outreach sessions per week, with at least one in the evening. The second will be in daytime hours to engage with those not currently in full or part-time education or regular employment.

The trust hopes to build on this with building-based youth work towards the end of February.

Its recent successful schemes included a popular Story Quest trail at Ballard Lake and Water Meadows, which launched in October 2022.

The joint project with the National Literacy Trust and Culture in Commons is aimed at primary school-aged children and their families.

It uses an adventure story guide written and illustrated by Charlotte Moore, which is available at New Milton Library, Forest Arts Centre and the town hall.

For more information about the trust’s work, email hello@NMYT.org.uk

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