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Young people use Christmas to build bridges with the older generation in Sedgefield

A group of pupils from Sedgefield Community College has taken the initiative to make a positive response to recent bad publicity about young people in the town. On Friday afternoon, members of the college’s brass band and other students made their way to the Eden Drive area after school to perform Christmas carols and hand out festive treats to residents in the vicinity. The initiative was coordinated by Sedgefield Neighbourhood Policing Team, with support from Sedgefield Town Council.

Most residents on Eden Drive and the surrounding area are elderly and the event was an opportunity to build bridges between generations. Along with a performance of carols, residents were served tea, coffee, mulled wine and a variety of sweet treats that had been baked at the college. Students also knocked on doors in the area and handed out additional goodies, along with free raffle tickets to win a hamper donated by Sedgefield Co-op and other prizes.

PCSO Lisa Hall of Sedgefield Neighbourhood Policing Team organised the event: “We are proud to have arranged the mini festive community event that brought different generations together in our neighbourhood policing area. Many young people living in and visiting Sedgefield recently have been the subject of negativity, and our hope was that by organising this with the help of the town council and the college, we have eliminated those perceptions and brought the community a step closer together. Our sincere thanks go to Katie Lennox and Simon Fuller, both teachers at Sedgefield Community College, Chris Lines of Sedgefield Town Council and the young people who attended, supporting this special evening to help build bridges within our community.”

Sedgefield Community College student Alisha Quinn performed at the event: “I was really happy to be involved with the event because of the positive atmosphere that it created, both from young people towards the older residents and in return. I think that it helped to repair some of the damage that has been caused in this important relationship between generations.”

Cllr Chris Lines adds: “We know that the vast majority of young people in Sedgefield are good citizens who contribute positively to the community. This was a great initiative that we were happy to support, allowing the children to build relationships with other residents and respond to some recent bad publicity.

“Sedgefield Town Council has been doing a lot of work over the last two years to improve youth provision in the community. Earlier in 2017, we launched a new youth club in Sedgefield and that organisation is now being led to a large degree by young people, who we are asking to help us shape future initiatives, as we aim to continue enhancing opportunities and facilities in the town for the younger generations.”

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