After the brilliant success of their previous anti-bullying poster competition, Network Ryde successfully obtained extra funding from the Police and Crime Commissioner to hold another project.

The funding enabled Network Ryde to buy 20 art resource packs that included paints, colouring pencils, felt-tips, glue, stationery, crayons, glitter gel pens and paper. Network Ryde also provided a pre-paid envelope to ensure the safe and easiest return of the posters. 16 posters were returned by young people aged 5 to 15.

The posters ranged from bold, graphic designs reflecting the ‘stay at home’ message and the importance of handwashing, whilst others showed positive well-being themes, to support mental health at this difficult time. Another poster design creatively depicted alternative handshakes. Network Ryde will display the posters in the window of their Youth Café ,‘147’, in Ryde High Street, and hope to present the posters more widely in the shop windows of Ryde soon along with local boards in Ryde Town.

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In the envelope of one of the returned posters, there was a note saying…

‘Dear @147 staff, Hello! I hope you are all ok and staying safe. Thank you so much for organising so many things for us all to do throughout the lockdown, it has really helped with coping with this situation. Hopefully, this is all over soon so we can return to normal, hope to see you all soon’

Michael Lane, Police and Crime Commissioner, said:

“I am delighted to be able to support Network Ryde in their work with young people on the Island. The poster project has given the young people something positive and creative to do while staying safe at home and has helped them to gain a greater understanding of the importance of socially distancing. As some restrictions ease it is even more important than ever that everyone understands the importance of staying two metres apart when out and about.

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“Having the right resources at the right time to enable those people supporting our communities to do so is essential. My Covid-19 Keeping Communities Safer Fund aimed to do exactly that – provide funding quickly to help to support communities as they work together to be safer during this time. The Network Ryde project is a good example of a locally led and delivered initiative providing engagement where it was needed.”

The Network Ryde Team commented:

“To everyone who sent in a poster, thank you!! As per, you have blown us away and outdone yourselves! We are so lucky to have such a creative, imaginative, talented bunch of Young People who we have the pleasure of working with 🧡”

As well as the poster project, Network Ryde have been running a Virtual Youth Club, providing online activities for young people, such as arts and crafts, cooking, science experiments and a Young Person Takeover. Young people have had the opportunity to interact with the Network Ryde youth workers, and still have access to the support from the service

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