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‘Getting Active After Lockdown’ Activities A Hit With Riverside Students

“Getting Active After Lockdown” activities have been a great hit with Riverside students. A consistent turn out of students attended weekly sessions on various activities that promoted their health and wellbeing. The Young Citizen Action Group (YCAG) had recently received funding from London Sport to have some youth activities delivered to young people over 7 weeks.

The Activities

YCAG decided on the following community activities, which took place at Riverside School:

  • BDYD (Barking & Dagenham Youth Dance) – Dance classes for Years 7 – 9
  • Creative Wellness – Cooking & Healthy Eating Workshops for Year 7 students
  • RDF – Basketball & Boxing Clubs for Years 7 – 9
  • Surya Wellbeing – Yoga and Mindfulness for all years

The Impact

It has been another successful achievement by the young people from YCAG to deliver these activities for their peers. Having designed an online survey to understand their peers experiences of lockdown, the YCAG narrowed down a list of activities that students wanted to get involved in. Community organisations then took part in interviews led by the YCAG to confirm the offers available. Community groups offered praise to the young people involved:

“It was great to be part of YCAG Dragon’s Den, and brilliant to see young people being put at the head of the table. Those involved were strong minded and came out with amazing and important questions.”

Kayden, Dance Instructor at BDYD, former Riverside School student

“I was very impressed with the young people’s resourcefulness. Not only did they survey the needs and preferences of the other students, but also asked pertinent questions to establish whether an activity would be beneficial to them. Very professional throughout the process!”

Nikhil, Surya Wellbeing

“It was very good to see young people on a board, working together to provide enrichment opportunities for their peers, schools and community. Everyone was very welcoming and polite and asked good questions. A great example that when young people come together they can design purposeful and impactful projects.”

Lamar, Right Development Foundation

Students have since taken part in all the activities with such enthusiasm and shown a willingness to learn new skills. Many of them having never undertaken boxing classes or had the opportunity to cook various cuisines voiced their appreciation that the activities were on offer, and asked how they could continue developing their new skills.

The last session with year 7 was all about what they like to cook: chicken strip burgers, pizza, pancakes, and milkshakes but introducing a healthier, economic way to make things at home rather than takeaways. We had fun delivering the sessions and glad our sessions have increased their confidence, knowledge, and interest in healthy cooking!

Young ARTivists receives £1300 from Thames Talk Fund

Emmanuel Oreyeni, Founder of Young ARTivists, received the great news that his arts-based social justice movement had received 26% of the Thames Talk poll votes, and so secured £1300. Thames Talk, a community engagement platform created by Barking Riverside Limited, directly involves local residents in decisions made for Thames Ward. Participants take part by completing the polls to automatically receive digital ‘coins’ which are then donated in return for real cash rewards for local groups.

What is Young ARTivists?

Young ARTivists (YA) is a new youth-led and arts-based social justice movement for young people in Thames Ward who want to use their talents in art, dance, drama, film, music, and poetry to raise awareness on issues affecting the youth of Thames Ward. YA offers fun and creative ways to elevate the voices of young people and an opportunity to empower them to take action on issues they are passionate about for the benefit of their community.

The project is supported by TWCP and will work closely with the Young Citizen Action Group (YCAG).

The Programme

The funding will support the running of a four-month initial programme to engage the young people in Thames Ward who want to use their artistic talents to raise awareness of, and get their voices heard on, issues they are passionate about, engaging the wider community using their creativity and critical thinking.

The programme will be based on social issues chosen by the young people. Weekly sessions will be run by Emmanuel incorporating a range of different artistic mediums to allow participants to develop their skills together to start building a network of powerful creatives seeking social change.

A final exhibition will be hosted to showcase the work of the young people and to engage the wider community.,

How To Get Involved

If you would like more information about the Young ARTivists programme, please complete the form below.

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