Wirral Youth Zone plans for the future

The Hive, Wirral Youth Zone in Birkenhead is looking to the future with confidence after being awarded £200,000 by  the Community Match Challenge Fund.

Before Covid-19 The Hive provided over 3,000 young people in Wirral with somewhere to go, something to do and someone to talk to. 

The facility boasts  a wide range of activities including a climbing wall, sports hall, MUGA pitch, boxing gym, fitness suite, performing arts studio, music room (incorporating recording studio), creative arts room, media suite, salon, skate park, training kitchen and café.

When the pandemic struck The Hive switched a range of activities online but creating a Covid-safe environment had left the organisation facing a huge financial headache until the Community Match Challenge Fund stepped in. 

 The £200,000 windfall will be used to enable then to continue their core offer to young people during the pandemic. 

For example a session coordinator will ensure all activities are Covid-safe and that young people comply with requirements including social distancing, temperature checks, cleaning regimes, face coverings, and consistent bubbles of young people.

An inclusion coordinator will ensure that all of disabled members continue to engage and receive all the support they need.

And an arts coordinator will continue to offer a range of activities, creative, musical etc. both at The Hive and online because arts activities have been proven to support positive mental health.*

Stuart Barnes, chief executive of The Hive, said the Community Match Challenge funding will help the most vulnerable and allow them to plan for the future.

“It ensures we can continue to offer our programme to thousands of young people, many of whom are vulnerable and depend on The Hive,” he said.

“The cost of complying with Covid-safe guidance is high and the fund helps us maintain all of our work as well as extra services. 

“In order to open we have had to buy new equipment, significantly increase cleaning, monitor young people’s compliance with guidance and also introduce a booking system to replace a drop-in operation which requires many more admin hours as most young people do not want to use this, hence hundreds of additional phone calls each week.

“The funding also aids sustainability. With many charities losing income from previous donors and the cancellation of fundraising activities we now have extra time to replace this funding for the next financial year.”

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