City kids in need of a break get a holiday thanks to sheer 'grit'
- Credit: MAP
As the city struggled to find its feet after a tumultuous 18 months a group of Norwich kids has finally had the chance to let their hair down.
MAP works with young people struggling with everything from mental health to drugs to finding their first job.
And now the Norwich-based charity has given more than 200 people over 400 hours worth of adventures across the county.
Danny Whitehouse, head of youth work, said: “During 74 day-trips over six weeks, young people took part in everything from camel-riding to boating on the broads, podcasting, and an impromptu prom.
"We just asked everyone to dress up and then got a load of pizza in with all the toppings we could think of."
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All of the above were in response to young peoples’ pleas.
They said they wanted more excitement, time to socialise and some support for them to unravel the events of the last year, reimagining their futures.
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Danny added: “Face painting, talking round the fire, giggling and sharing hopes and dreams, it reminds us that the activity itself is the least important aspect of our youth work.
“It’s all about the relationships we form, the new goals we set together, the moments when young people think about themselves differently.”
He explained that the time spent on activity days were "a chance for young people to figure out their place in the world”.
But pulling of these events wasn’t without difficulty: “Through grit and creativity we managed to avoid having to cancel a single activity due to Covid.
"An entire activity centre shut down due to isolation a week before our booking. So we found another venue.
"Then we had a minibus driver had a positive result the day before our trip so we hired a fleet of taxis," he added.
Danny went on: “They tell us that it has eased their anxiety to be out and about again, and to talk about how things might be different now, in a post-Covid world.
“As much as possible, we want to help young people to shape and make that world better, now and in the future. This summer was the start of many of those conversations.”