Charity have it in the bag for vulnerable youngsters

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Leading charity Action for Children Northern Ireland have bagged a novel way of reaching out to vulnerable young people by offering a gift of hope.

A unique collaborative youth project in Portadown have combined forces to create ‘Welcome Bags’ aimed at children who are going into foster care and often don’t have the reassurance of being able to take their precious memories with them.

Action for Children’s Fostering Team Manager David Montgomery explained how the simple idea offers a sense of belonging to a young person who is joining a new family.

He explained: “The idea is that a young person joining a new family is presented with their own personalised bag to welcome them and make them feel at home.

“Often when children and young people are being brought into care their belongings are thrown into a black bin bag and it can have the effect of making them feel devalued.

“We are being proactive in working against this impersonal approach that children experience when they are moving. We want the young person to have a more positive and welcoming introduction to their new life.”