Worthing Homes has been helping Durrington High School students face up to bullying and anti-social behaviour. The Worthing-based housing association has sponsored teaching materials for hundreds of students at the school, as part of its commitment to the government’s UK-wide ‘Respect’ agenda.
As an organisation based in Worthing, we have an insight into the challenges that face young people and their families and we think we can help to make a difference. Our business is focussed on helping to develop Worthing as a good place to work and live – and in supporting the ‘Respect’ agenda we believe we are giving young people the confidence to be themselves. Nicky Fiondella, Worthing Homes
More than 700 Year 8 and 9 students received the ‘Your life, your choice’ book produced by the Children’s Safety Education Foundation for ‘Respect’. The teaching materials get to grips with issues affecting teenagers, such as bullying, peer pressure, misuse of drugs and alcohol and racial harassment. They also focus on local citizenship – including ways in which young people can help make Worthing a better place to live.
‘Your life, your choice’ encourages children to take control of their lives and their decisions and to understand the impact of anti-social behaviour on themselves and others. There is also advice on how to stay safe and how to help the community through crime prevention and youth action projects.
The Durrington pupils had fun making their own colourful posters to publicise the ‘Respect’ campaign. They said that the books had made their lessons more enjoyable and were useful and easy to understand. Bill Cole, Head of Personal Social Health & Citizenship Education at Durrington High School, said that the ‘Your life, your choice’ materials have increased the pupils understanding and level of achievement.
According to ‘Respect’, seven out of ten parents and young people think that young people commit crimes because there is not enough for them to do. ‘Respect’ aims to expand the role of sport, constructive activities and volunteering as positive routes to nurture a culture of respect among young people.
Worthing Homes supports other activities for young people in Worthing through the Mick’s Garage Community House project. It offers volunteer opportunities, a homework club, holiday activities, a gardening club and provides a base for local football teams.