Woodley youth charity reducing anti-social behaviourBy Jon Nurse
March 15, 2013
A youth charity has been praised for working to reduce anti-social behaviour in Woodley.
The town is a ‘relaxed’ and ‘peaceful’ place thanks to the hard work of work of Just Around the Corner (JAC) charity, which supports young people across the borough.
Former town mayor Councillor Coling Lawley praised the charity and its work with the town council and police at Woodley Town Council’s annual town electors meeting on Tuesday, March 5.
He said: “A lot of the credit for this happy state of affairs goes to JAC. The town council has a service level agreement with JAC whereby, in return for funding, JAC takes the lead in Woodley’s efforts to combat this nuisance.”
Sam Milligan, JAC founder, said: “The atmosphere is quite relaxed in Woodley at present and has been for the last 18 months, which is really good. That’s down to a lot of people working together to make sure we provide what young people want. The skate park [in Woodford Park] has been a prime example of that.
“A lot of people have been praying for young people and their families and we believe that makes a big difference.”
Cllr Lawley added: “While we are happy with the current level of youth anti-social behaviour in Woodley, we are not complacent and we will continue to look to JAC’s efforts to help our young people make their integration into society in a satisfactory manner.”
JAC launched in Woodley 15 years ago and now helps young people across the borough. Mr Milligan said: “We try to have as many gateways as possible to engage with the young people and when it’s all put together you get a more peaceful town.”
An outreach vehicle is based in Woodley on Friday evenings and weekends, which Mr Milligan feels has been effective at building relationships with youths.
Work starts in the spring on a stables project in Hurst which will support young people with assisted learning, as efforts continue to develop the JAC Pad in Peach Street, Wokingham – a drop-in centre helping young people gain employment.
Mr Milligan added: “We are entering another phase which is very important for us. It’s quite exciting.”
For more information visit www.jacoutreach.org