Sports hub aiming to change young lives for the better

Kingston Bryars enjoys the ice hockey at FunUcation. INPT3515-410
Kingston Bryars enjoys the ice hockey at FunUcation. INPT3515-410

There was a good turn-out at Chambers Park last Friday night for the launch of a new sports hub.

Young people had the opportunity to try out all different sorts of sports and hear about courses and opportunities available to them at the FunUcation event.

The hub, which will be run by the Active Communities Project, is one of three across Northern Ireland to share £600,000 in funding from Asda.

The charity will work alongside Asda community life champions to run outreach programmes across the region – with the aim of helping young people gain key employment skills through engagement with sports.

These skills include leadership and team building and the chance to gain accredited qualifications.

Sports sessions will run at a variety of venues weekly for children aged 13 years and over.

There will be three sessions per week, kicking off in the immediate future.

This is the second hub to open in Northern Ireland as part of the ongoing Asda Foundation and Active Communities Network partnership.

Elaine Livingstone, Asda Portadown community life champion, said, “All the community life champions, including myself, have undergone extensive training this year to help support and supplement the running of this programme and I can’t wait to get started.

“I have no doubt that many young people in the Portadown area will greatly benefit from it.”

Jim Donnelly, head of programmes NI for Active Communities Network, which has been operating in Northern Ireland since 2009, said,“Following the £600,000 donation we’ve worked closely with the Asda Foundation and are delighted to be kick-starting our hubs in key areas across Northern Ireland and we hope to help at least 1,500 young people through the service.”