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Staffordshire Fire & Rescue Service - Preventing, Protecting, Responding

Projects for Young People Awarded £23k

Two projects that engage young people, improve their fitness and well-being and help to tackle anti social behaviour have been awarded a total of £23,000 from Staffordshire County Council’s Local Community Fund.

"By working with our partners and involving young people in these clubs we can improve the welfare of the local communities while helping reduce anti-social behaviour," Staffordshire County Councillor Len Bloomer and Chair of the Fire Authority.

The innovative StreetStadiaTM sports initiative run via the Stoke-on-Trent and Staffordshire Safer Communities Community Interest Company (CIC) will receive £17,000, while a Fire Cadets Club run by Staffordshire Fire and Rescue Service at Cannock will get £6,000.

In order to gain funding from the Staffordshire Local Community Fund both projects had to win the support of local councillors – StreetStadiaTM was supported by 24 county councillors and Cannock Fire Cadets by 12

Staffordshire County Cllr Len Bloomer, one of the councillors supporting the projects and Chair of the Fire Authority, said: “I am delighted to be able to help fund these two exciting schemes which will help engage young people in sport while enhancing their life skills outside of school.  By working with our partners and involving young people in these clubs we can improve the welfare of the local communities while helping reduce anti-social behaviour.

“The Community Fund is a great scheme that provides funding to many worthwhile causes and projects in local communities. Local councillors are also well placed to allocate the funding as they know what would best benefit their local areas.”
 
On Saturday May 11, Cannock Community Fire Station will be hosting a celebration event to mark its £6,000 grant. The funding will be used towards running the Cadet Club which costs around £8,000 a year.

The councillors that supported the funding application for the Cadet Club have all been invited to the event where they will meet fire cadets and view some activities including hose running, breathing apparatus drills and rescuing a volunteer casualty from a car.  

Cannock Fire Cadets Club offers places for up to 16 students aged 12-18. The club meets on Saturday mornings and aims to equip cadets with skills they would be unable to learn elsewhere as well as with a sense of pride in their community.

Activities include learning why arson and hoax fire calls are destructive, volunteering at local community events and studying for the BTEC in Fire and Rescue Services in the Community qualification.

The annual running cost provides instructors, maintains cadet uniforms and kit, buys T-shirts for cadets, funds trips and part-funds the BTEC entry fee.

Carmel Warren, Prevention Manager for SFRS’s Western Service Delivery Group, said: “We are thrilled to receive this financial boost towards the cost of running the club which we strongly believe has had a positive impact on the Cannock community. It is becoming increasingly difficult to access external funding and without it the club faces closure.”

StreetStadiaTM was launched by Cannock firefighters for young people aged eight to 17. It transforms open space into a portable sporting arena where a variety of free games and activities such as dodgeball, football and volleyball are provided during school holidays.

Over Easter, Staffordshire Fire and Rescue Service, in partnership with the Stoke-on-Trent and Staffordshire Safer Communities CIC provided StreetStadiaTM at Cannock, Hednesford and Rugeley. It is hoped to expand the project into other areas of the county and SFRS and the Safer Communities CIC are exploring new partnerships with businesses and organisations.  

Kate Staples, Community Liaison Officer for Safer Communities CIC, said: “StreetStadiaTM is not just a great way of helping to reduce deliberate fire-setting and anti-social behavior, it encourages active and healthy lifestyles and enables young people to meet each other in a safe environment.”