FEBRUARY 2021 NEWSLETTER – PROJECT DELIVERY UPDATES

Greetings everyone and welcome to another one of our monthly newsletters! We are thrilled to provide a range of fantastic updates and insights into our delivery for the wider community, families, and young people.

We cannot believe it is the end of a second month in 2021! Crazy how time flies, right? But we hope you are settled and looking forward to the better times ahead.

So, without further ado, we hope you enjoy the read and please contact us for any support with families, young people or community groups who would benefit from our service.

What a month we have had! Celebrating so much from Valentine’s Day, Pancake Tuesday, Fairtrade Fortnight and most importantly our young people’s half term holidays.

We know that at the moment it is really difficult for young people to enjoy their time off school as they can’t get involved in some of the things they activities they did previous to Covid-19.

With this in mind, we wanted to support that by introducing as many fun, engaging activities as possible across Middlesbrough for young people to access and stay occupied.

These sessions were focused on getting young people involved and informed on current circumstances in relation to Covid-19 and just all round engaged and supported by youth workers the best we can.

Supporting our community with the correct information around the current pandemic is something we are doing daily. Whilst staff are out on detached, working virtually, or even remotely we are really focusing on getting the right messages across to all residents of the town no matter the barriers which occur.

Middlesbrough Councils Covid Community Champions network have been working endlessly to create new and innovated ways to share all of the relevant information people will find useful and need to stay safe.

This network has been adapting new ways to best suit their own individual service users to ensure they receive the correct messages, and we encourage all to do the same.

We understand that as an individual you may not have a job role where you influence others on the actions they take however there is always someone in your life, community or even virtually who you could support in the same way.

We are encouraging all to stay positive, support one another, stick to the rules, and save lives.

It is an exciting time for Linx at the moment as we are facing many milestones, introducing new deliveries, and adapting to all the circumstances we are under.

The COVID-19 pandemic is particularly challenging and disruptive to the daily lives of young people in a number of ways. That is why we are excited to announce the beginning of a new project which will be focusing on photography throughout the “3rd Lockdown”.

The power of photography can help people of all ages, including young people, to express themselves by telling a story of lockdown from their own unique experience and perspective.

Photographers will be encouraged to think a little about the images they are producing and also be able to relate in basic terms what they are trying to convey in their images.

Along with the support of the Gallery club, we look forward to working with all who would like to be involved. By the end, we would look to exhibit a selection of the resulting images – most certainly through the Linx and Gallery profiles and websites.

We are also looking forward to introducing some more news in next month’s newsletter so keep your eyes peeled! New things are coming Linx’s way and we would like you all to be involved.

As most of you will already know, our food parcel distribution is still available and in high demand as always. We aim to tackle food poverty across Middlesbrough by supporting families the best we possibly can at this difficult time.

This month we decided to add some little extras for families accessing this service! “A Random Act of Kindness”

Over the half term holidays, our very own Gordan Ramsey (Ricky) created a step-by-step video where he used some of the surplus foods to cook a healthy Potato and Leek soup. This was then distributed to families alongside the food packages which also included the ingredients to make the soup from home.

Each week over 20 families access this specific project from our service, and we appreciate all of the support, donations, and feedback from everyone. Keep up supporting one another and if you, or anyone you know, is in need then don’t hesitate to contact the team for further information.

Virtual life this past month

Since the start of 2021 we have had over 30 virtual activity sessions supporting young people with a number of skills, the space to socalise and engage in some meaningful work, safely. Our sessions vary from DJ & disco, family quiz night and arts & craft activities to sessions like Time to Talk Tuesdays, home schooling support and climate action focused deliveries.

We have had some really good turn outs to our sessions and great work and engagement has developed. This month we also had the privilege of having guests attend our virtual sessions to deliver a little something from their organisation with the young people across Middlesbrough. Actes ran a session in relation to climate action and polar ice caps, and Headstart South Tees ran one around mental health & wellbeing.

Both of the sessions were amazing and our young people left understanding new ways of looking after themselves and the planet, the feedback after the sessions was great. We would like to thank our partners again who are wanting to deliver their service to the young people across the town. We are happy to have guests support us tackle the pressing issues young people currently face.

Our amazing Graduate Sports Apprentice and Coach Core Community Impact of the Year winner has continued to support young people & families in keeping fit and exercising from home during lockdown. Raheem has been creating workout from home videos which are uploaded onto our social media for anyone to participate in and stay healthy both physically and mentally. Take a look at the link below to find some of Linx’s lockdown exercise sessions.

https://www.facebook.com/100010150627198/videos/1389777751370566/

Once half term was over staff knew young people would have to get back into the routine of home schooling and meeting the needs of their school’s expectations. To support young people in doing so, Feast of Fun allowed us to purchase a range of stationery, books, work sheets etc so we put together back to school stationery packs available to anyone in need.

What a response we had, which led to supporting between 30/40 young people with the stationery they need to complete any work given.

This month we have been talking a lot, which I guess is nothing new. However, did you hear our Operational Manager on BBC Radio Tees at the beginning of the month discussing the Covid community champion project and how we in Middlesbrough are doing so?

https://www.facebook.com/100010150627198/videos/1381549158860092/

We have also had one of our senior youth workers, Lauren, raise a question we are highly passionate about with our town Mayor Andy Preston. The question was, “What is happening to support our young people’s mental health and how can we see more of it happening”?

https://www.facebook.com/100010150627198/videos/1388505361497805/

Our Operational Manager, Sara, also made an appearance and took part in a virtual discussion with Peter Barron where they spoke about the food distribution project and how we are tackling food poverty across Middlesbrough over the past year. They also discussed why funding is so vital in supporting that delivery and service users.

https://fb.watch/3UxEHBeJIe/

All of the above discussions are available to listen to via our social media accounts and links attached.

To our valued young people, families, communities and business partners, at this time, we would be interested in any feedback or comments that you would have in relation to our service delivery during lockdown and for future delivery.

Please stay safe and if there is anything we can support with then don’t hesitate to contact our team who would be happy to help.

Twitter: @Linx_Youth

Facebook: @LinxHemlington

Website: www.linxyouthproject.co.uk