Bright Futures are a registered charity working with young women aged 11-25 to give them a brighter future by raising their self-esteem and confidence around a range of issues which affect them including alcohol and substance misuse, sexual health and relationships, homelessness, family relationships, friendships, school, education, training, crime and anti-social behaviour. They provide a range of innovative work with young women within their communities in order to give them safe and interesting things to do on evenings and at weekends.
Bright Futures have a successful track record of delivering a Community Ambassadors Programme in partnership with Clarion Housing Group. This project has been running for the last 5 years and they have recruited a total of 60 Community Ambassadors from the Clarion Housing Group area of Cleadon Park.
Their young ambassadors have completed a wide range of accredited programmes, campaigns, volunteering opportunities and social action projects. This year, they applied to the local KEY Fund for £250.00 towards a social action project “Winter Homeless Packs”. The young ambassadors wanted to contribute towards a bigger Bright Futures Project and took part in planning what would go into each winter homeless pack and then shopping for the individual items and making up the packs.
The CAP’s were also invited to Carlisle as part of Children In Need to discuss why they enjoy coming to Bright Futures and what they get out of volunteering. The Community Ambassadors are working towards completing a Level 1 in Sports Leadership, gaining confidence and skills to facilitate short exercise sessions for children and young people.
The Community Ambassadors also established a Mini Ambassadors Group three years ago when they recruited younger members of their community aged 4-11. The Mini Ambassadors group now meets twice weekly and is attended by over 20 young people each week. The group of young women volunteer on a weekly basis with the Mini Ambassadors and will develop the role of peer mentors for our younger ambassadors. They will support with the education and help upskill our younger generation embedding the role of a Community Ambassador and overseeing social action projects.
The establishment of Community Ambassador Programmes really make a difference to the lives of young people taking part by giving them new skills to improve their health, wellbeing and safety as well as creating safer communities. Engagement in this type of project see young people and residents working together overcoming problems.