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Young offenders building a future for themselves in Southchurch
A SOUTHCHURCH-BASED workshop is helping young offenders turn their lives around.
Horticultural work by the youths is now on display at Southend Pier as an example of their success.
Southend Council’s Youth Offending Service, based in Southchurch Road, helps take in ten to 18-year-olds who have been sent by courts to carry out community work. Repatriation worker Tony Wagstaff said: “The whole idea is to get young people to learn skills they can use practically to help them get on.
“Everyone who comes is different and they have to want to change their ways, but a lot really commit themselves to it and we’ve even had one offender go on to start his own gardening business, and others go on to college.
“Some people say it’s just nice stuff that they do, but they have to make the effort to come after school, including in the middle of winter, and that’s something.”
The display at the pier has been ten months in the making and features a model house made out of recycled materials and a floral garden.
The service has won prizes at the Hampton Court Flower Show before for previous projects, and Mr Wagstaff hopes that the current work can be displayed there.
He hopes to display the work there and use the opportunity to raise awareness of the Crohn’s in Childhood Research charity. The service would need a sponsor to get the project to the show.
If you can help call Tony on 01702 534 060.
If you have any Southchurch or Thorpe Bay community news, get in touch with Ian Weinfass at email@example.com or call 01702 321 142.
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