A PILOT project for young people in Bemerton Heath has been launched to help promote positive mental wellbeing through physical activity.

The Active Hub has been set up by charity Rise:61 and includes one-to-one mentoring as well as group workout fitness sessions, which are free to all attending.

It has been supported and partly funded by a £13,500 grant from Allchurches Trust’s ‘Hope Beyond’ programme, which aimed to help communities respond to the challenges of the pandemic.

There was additional funding from Salisbury Area Board’s youth grant programme.

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For the one to one sessions Rise:61 have partnered with local gym ‘Kingdom Barbell’, who’ve allowed the charity to use its facility for young people.

The Active Hub is run by Ben Crouch, Rise:61’s youth work lead, who is also a qualified personal trainer, and said:“It’s exciting to see young people get involved in fitness, something that was rated highly in a recent survey carried out by Rise:61, but also to equip young people with tools to help promote positive mental health.”

Detached youth project

Last year, Rise:61 received grants from Wiltshire Community Foundation’s Covid-19 Relief Fund of £8,489.60 which was used to start a detached youth project, where youth workers go out on the estate engaging with young people.

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A survey was also done to find out how they had been affected by the pandemic and what would make the community better.

The top things young people wanted most was a youth cafe and a gym they can access without the barriers of cost or having to travel.

Hopes for Youth Hub

Rise:61 is dreaming about creating a purpose-built Youth Hub on the estate, utilising its Creative Hub and Active Hub activities to allow more opportunities for young people.

The charity has applied to Wiltshire Community Foundation for funding to carry out a feasibility study on whether they could create the hub out of shipping containers in a central location on the estate.

Anyone with skills in architecture, planning or building work and leases who would like to be part of an action group get in touch with Rise:61’s Creative Hub manager Becks Crouch at becks@rise61.org


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