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Commissioner visits project helping young people get active through funding removed from criminals.

18 September, 2019

Lancashire’s Police and Crime Commissioner has seen first-hand how his Community Action Fund has supported the work of a Blackburn based community project – utilising money seized from criminals.

The Billy Project Juniors builds on the work the project has already done across the Blackburn and Darwen area to build community links with individuals who may otherwise be vulnerable or have little to do.

Based at U2 Get Fit in the Mill Hill area, this then allows focused engagement on the unique issues that younger people face, building self-confidence, linking in with other organisations and signposting for further support if appropriate.

The Billy Project Juniors utilises the strong partnerships already in place with the Billy Project itself, including GPs, schools, parents and others.

Clive Grunshaw, Lancashire’s Police and Crime Commissioner said:

“This is a great example of my Community Action Fund supporting projects and addressing local concerns. That this project builds on the great work already being done by the Billy Project shows that we will do what we can to support organisations who are supporting their communities and supporting vulnerable people, key priorities in my Police and Crime Plan.

“Being able to utilise the Proceeds of Crime to support projects like this is also fantastic and means that these funding are going back into the county and having a positive impact in our communities.

“This goes to show the impact that these small grants can have – they provide real value for money and make a big difference across Lancashire.”

Kerry Cameron, from the Billy Project Juniors, said:

“Thanks to CAF we have been able to establish a club for young girls to attend who need help with building confidence, making friends, reducing anxiety and improving their mental health. It is a safe place to come and offload and meet new people from different backgrounds and exercise in a positive, empowering female environment. 

“The change in the girls has been fantastic, from being more confident, opening up more, they aren’t hiding in their hoodies with hoods up and they have all reported improvements in their anxiety and mental health. 

“We look forward to continuing to build the group and strengthening bonds. 

Sessions run Monday & Wednesday 4pm-5pm and Saturdays 9.30-10.30am and are free to attend for girls aged 13-19.”

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