Sprowston Youth Engagement Project (SYEP) received a wonderful present this Christmas in the form of a grant from the National Lottery for £319,255 over three years to help it expand the work it does with the young people of Sprowston and Old Catton.
The money will help increase SYEP’s resources in focusing on supporting 500 to 600 young people a year through a range of activities and individual mentoring. Work will include a focus on the issues of knife crime and anti-social behaviour, helping young people with the challenges of mental health issues, including 1 to 1 support, while also building better links with other community groups and organisations who work with young people. Along with its range of activities and mentoring, SYEP is also developing an Urban Adventure Garden where young people can meet and engage with a range of projects aimed at helping and developing their life skills.
The Revd Canon Simon Stokes, the Chair of SYEP Trustees, commented said: “In its tenth year of supporting young people this generous grant from the National Lottery will help give Clare Lincoln our Project Lead, and the team at SYEP the ability to reach out to even more young people and make a difference in their lives while at the same time helping the local community.”
Sprowston Youth Engagement Project (SYEP) was established by Clare Lincoln and the Revd Canon Simon Stokes, in 2012 (registering as a charity in 2014) in collaboration with local churches and community representatives, following an approach by a local PCSO looking for help to set up permanent youth provision in the area.
Following consultation with partners and young people SYEP was born as a youth café providing a safe space where young people can engage with friends and build trust and rapport with trained volunteers and staff. Since 2012 our offer has grown and developed considerably, we have supported over 2000 young people and SYEP and the young people we help have won many awards.
SYEP now has a strong reputation and is highly valued by the communities they serve, delivering projects 6 days a week, open to any young person (aged between 11 and 18 (25 if they have learning difficulties) and young adults aged 18-24), particularly those attending Sprowston Community Academy.
Their mission is to provide high-quality positive activities and personal development for local young people and young adults to raise aspirations, increase resilience, and improve physical and mental well-being so that they participate in society as independent, mature and responsible individuals.