Story: Naurin Fatima and Ian Clifford
Those who attended the New Deal Children and Young People’s Resident Forum were in for an astounding performance.
The evening unfolded with delicious food prepared by the All Saints cooks: Del and Jackie, who had prepared tasty chicken and saltfish. Surprisingly even the young adults who dwell on pizza and chips enjoyed the food immensely. This was followed by a moving song and dance performance from the Ellesmere Youth Project.
The younger children from the performance group: “Militant” performed several numbers. One asked: “Why is there so much poverty and war” and called for more love and caring in the world.
This was followed by the much-awaited question and answer session with the newly-elected members of the Burngreave Youth Council.
Those present were hugely impressed by how articulate and thoughtful the new representatives had become. In such a short period of time these young people had matured immensely. This could have only been achieved via the support and the guidance of the Streetworx team.
All members called for more activities for young people in the area. Hasseena called for derelict buildings in the area to be renovated to keep young people off the streets and use their abilities productively. Furthermore, Nazia called for the lack of affordable housing in the area to be addressed promptly before the situation becomes irreversible.
Several representatives addressed the need for the Youth Council to be representative of the whole community. “We have to bring different communities together,” said Zanumb, “to get rid of all the divisions that are evident in our area due to race and gang formation”.
Nazia called for representatives of the Youth Council to be allowed to become members of the various powerful Boards in the area, such as the New Deal and Services District Boards. However, this can only be achieved once the young people have training to enhance their communication, confidence and presentation skills.
Those who attended left with full bellies; a song in their hearts and much food for thought from the comments raised by the young councillors.