Canoeing project steers youths away from committing anti-social behaviour in Winsford Date published: 10th September 2018 10am

A canoeing project set up to reduce anti-social behaviour in Winsford has been hailed an ‘oarsome’ success.

More than 20 young people from a range of backgrounds took part in the Youth Engagement Community Canoeing Project at Winsford Marina on Tuesday afternoons during the summer.

They learned about confidence building, discipline and teamwork while taking part in a range of water-based activities and were steered away from committing anti-social behaviour in the future.

The project was run jointly by Cheshire Police and Weaver Vale Housing Trust (WVHT).

Police Community Support Officer Matt Johnson, who attended every session alongside fellow Winsford PCSO Amie Hough, said: “The course was a huge success.

“The youths who participated were selected from the Winsford wards of Over and Verdin and Wharton.

“They learned essential skills such as discipline, teamwork and confidence building on the water at Winsford Marina and also took part in activities and theory lessons at the marina hut.

“The youths earned certificates of achievement from Cheshire Police and Weaver Vale Housing Trust, as well as Paddler Passports for canoeing proficiency, and with the skills and messages the participants learned during the course and the mentoring they were given I am confident that they will be far less likely to commit anti-social behaviour in the future.”

PCSO Hough added: “It was fantastic to see the youths develop in terms of both confidence and skills during the course.”

The project was part funded by the Cheshire Crimebeat charity and WVHT.

WVHT Community Engagement Officer Georgia Winstanley attended every session and the water-based activities were led by Alan Reay of the Winsford Youth and Community Forum.

A parent of one of the participants said: “My son loved the summer canoeing.

“He has grown in confidence and it kept him busy during the holidays.”