Bringing the Community Together

January 28th 2020

Five Lamps Youth Club “The Youthy”, is based in the Mandale and Victoria ward of Stockton on Tees. In comparison with the Borough and North East, the Mandale and Victoria Ward have a larger proportion of BME population, and a smaller proportion of residents identifying as Christian. (Mandale and Victoria Ward Profile, 2019).

Considering it has one of the smaller proportions of residents identifying as Christian, the majority of young people who attend our evening youth clubs do report as Christian.

To help strengthen good interfaith relations at all levels and increase awareness of the different and distinctive faith communities surrounding our Youthy, the young people and staff came up with an idea to host a “bringing the community together” event.

The event was held at the Youthy on Saturday 18 January 2020 and there were over 100 attendees who attended the day. At the event there was a representation from Media Cultured who are a highly successful and acclaimed social enterprise specialising in promoting unity and countering extremism through education, inclusion, safeguarding and equality programmes. They brought along, food and information about their faith and organisation.

There were activities and posters that families could be involved in which showcased a number of faiths such as, Christianity, Islam, Hinduism and Buddhism. There was also a face painter, glitter tattooist and a dance lesson from Urban Kaos, who created a Bollywood/street dance with the young attendees on the day. Five Lamps were successful in receiving funding from The Inter Faith Youth Trust, which enabled them to offer the day free of charge.

Five Lamps also provided free food for all of the attendees, plus the opportunity to have a go on the fantastic climbing wall which has levels for all abilities.

To help showcase the talents and activities the young people are involved in at the Youthy, two of the young people who attend the Thursday evening youth club, Evie Morgan and Alisha Mitchell performed at the Interfaith open day by singing a few of their favourite songs. Attendees were blown away by the confidence and talent of both girls and they were the stars of the day.

Local businesses in Thornaby were also involved in the day by donating tombola prizes to help raise money for trips and activities for the young people who attend our Youth Club. The tombola was a huge success and Five Lamps raised over £300.

One of the attendees on the day said;

“Massive thank you to all of the staff who made the fun day an amazing event there was, music, food, activities and my all-time favourite tombola which my kids and I won lots of amazing prizes”

The Youthy currently delivers four youth club provisions – All Stars Youth Club (for young people aged 7 to 10 years), Youth United Stockton (YUS) (for young people aged 10 to 19 years), Tuesday Evening VIBE (young people with physical and learning disabilities aged 7 to 21 years) and also Our Friday Evening Session VIBE Club For Young Adults aged 16 plus with physical and learning disabilities.