Junior youth club all set to open

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Article by Oxford Mail: 10th March 2011

A NEW club for young people on an Oxford estate will open its doors next week.

Children aged seven to 11 can discover sports, dance, games, cooking, storytelling and art at the Rose Hill Junior Youth Club at the Community Centre in The Oval.

The first session, at 4.30pm next Thursday, will be free so youngsters can meet staff and try activities.

More than £9,000 has been secured to keep the Thursday afternoon club running for the next 12 months.

Committee chairman Deacon Stephen Richardson said: “There is nothing in Rose Hill for children of this age.

“This will allow our young people to grow in confidence, develop their social skills and self esteem and have lots of fun.”

It will be staffed by three experienced youth workers, Michael Porter, Debbie Eagen and Sensi McLean, who have close links with Rose Hill.

Fundraiser Fran Gardner said: “After many months of waiting, while fundraising and staff interviews took place, the club is finally ready to launch.

“We have a really talented group of youth workers who have a fantastic range of skills.

“We can accommodate about 30 young people at a time, but may have to launch more sessions if there is a big take up.”

The club is completely independent of Oxfordshire County Council which is planning to axe funding for 20 youth centres to save £4.2m over four years.

Ms Gardner said: “It shows that youth clubs can be launched. It is quite a hard slog at times when you have to raise funds, but it is possible.”