With the promise of more activities, for a broader range of youngsters, SPACE returns to Stafford this summer.
The Space programme, which will bring together public, voluntary and private sector organisations to help nurture, support and guide Staffordshire youngsters, was introduced by Staffordshire’s Police and Crime Commissioner Matthew Ellis.
And, with Mr Ellis providing a substantial increase in funding for the programme, new for this year is the lowering of the age band for certain activities, from 11 to eight-years-old*.
The nine district and borough councils within the county have already signed up for Space 2018, with preparations underway behind the scenes to ensure the 8-17-year-olds of Staffordshire and Stoke have a summer of fun and enjoyment to look forward to.
There will be something locally to keep your children occupied during the school holidays, wherever you’re from in the county. And with the nation set to be gripped by World Cup fever, Space 2018 also hopes to have a few football-related treats in store for soccer fans throughout the county.
Full details of activities and events will be rolled-out during the build up to the summer holidays. Space 2018 is also being extended in certain areas to include the autumn term holiday period too.
The scheme attracted more than 18000 attendees across the summer holidays in 2017 – an increase of 5669 from the previous 12 months. Statistics showed a drop in police-reported youth-related ASB throughout the Force during the period when Space was in operation, with a 38 per cent drop in incidents between mid-July and early-September 2017, compared to the same period 12 months earlier.
These are influenced by a wide range of factors, including weather, opportunities to engage in activities of interest, operational activity together with changes to Force recording practices.
Matthew Ellis said: ‘Space 2018 promises to be our biggest yet. We’ve had huge numbers attending in the past and hope for even more this year.
‘Space is all about fun, learning and growing in confidence. Staffordshire, like many areas, experiences higher rates of ASB during summer holidays than at other times and I’m keen that efforts are made to tackle this. I’ve increased investment in the programme to widen its scope and range.
‘Success for the youngsters is seen by the smiles on their faces, opportunities experienced for the first time and the things they’ve learned.
‘Space 2018 will continue with its aim of increasing skills, improving health and wellbeing, and creating opportunities for young people to take part in positive activities to make communities safer. It should be a very exciting year for us all.’
Use and follow #StaffsSpace2018 on Twitter for updates during the coming months.
NOTE: *Age restrictions apply to certain activities – please check with organisers for more details.