Renfrewshire’s award-winning diversionary programme Street Stuff delivered youth activities to 31,218 young people during 2017/18.
Young people can take part in football and dance, as well as gaming and DJ workshops provided on a specially designed Youth Bus.
Working with the Renfrewshire Community Safety Partnership, the programme identifies hot spot areas of anti-social behaviour and aims to divert young people into more meaningful activities.
The programme also includes the provision of healthy meals to young people, with 5081 provided in 2017/18 – taking the total number of healthy meals provided since the extended programme began in October 2015 to more than 20,000.
Councillor Marie McGurk, Convener of Renfrewshire Council’s Communities, Housing and Planning Policy Board, said: “We’re extremely proud of our Street Stuff programme and the success it has achieved since it was introduced in 2009.
“There has been a sustained reduction in anti-social behaviour in Renfrewshire and young people are actively seeking out the activities within their community.
“The programme is not only providing a place to play though, with almost 80% of the sessional workers being former participants of the programme and this volunteering experience is boosting their future employment prospects.
“Add to that, the focus on healthy eating and the provision of a healthy meal at activities and it is clear to see why the programme has been, and continues to be, so successful.”
An independent evaluation into the programme undertaken by the University of West of Scotland in June 2017 delivered an extremely positive outlook, outlining that Street Stuff provides positive activities, improves social inclusion and gives young people access to facilities and experiences within local communities they otherwise wouldn’t receive.
Stephen Gallacher, Street Stuff Manager, said: “The volunteers and staff take immense pride in the success of the programme and the difference being made to the lives of young people in Renfrewshire.
“We are actively working to engage with young people, ensure they have positive activities to take part in and aim to guide them into positive destinations which they may otherwise not be able to achieve.
“I’m delighted to see the number of attendees who go from taking part in the activities to helping to deliver them to the next generation of young people and we’ll continue to give young people the skills and experience they need for the future.”
The success of the programme was recognised with three high-profile awards in 2017, with success coming at the COSLA Excellence Awards, ROCCO Business Awards and Scottish Public Sector Awards.
For more information on the project and for the current timetable of activities, visit www.renfrewshire.gov.uk/