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Overview of the Bodmin Rotary Brighter Future Fundraiser:
The Brighter Future Fundraiser is a Bodmin Rotary Club initiative that combines a competition to showcase the creative talents of the youngsters in Bodmin and the raising of funds to help disadvantaged and vulnerable young people in Bodmin achieve their potential.
Like many charitable organisations, Covid restrictions have forced Bodmin Rotary to cancel nearly all our usual fundraising events and activities in 2020. We have designed this fundraiser to be as Covid-safe as possible, to prevent it from being disrupted if further restrictions are put in place.
There are, sadly, many young people in Bodmin who live in deprived and dysfunctional homes. Without support and encouragement there is a risk that these young people will fail to make the most of their own potential. They are also at a higher risk of criminal and anti-social behaviour and substance abuse. The negative impact of the Covid pandemic is expected to worsen their prospects. We know that areas of high levels of deprivation, such as three of Bodmin’s neighbourhoods, are likely to suffer more than others.
Also, it is generally recognised that young people will be disproportionately affected by high levels of unemployment resulting from Covid as they are often working in the sectors among the worst affected, such as retail and hospitality.
Carol Randall - Project Leader
PRESS RELEASE 10/12.20
Notice for immediate release: Bodmin Rotary Club raising funds to provide support for Bodmin’s disadvantaged and vulnerable young people
Bodmin Rotary Club are busy preparing for the proposed launch of an ambitious fundraising project in January next year. Called the Brighter Future Fundraiser, this initiative combines a competition to showcase the creative talents of the youngsters in Bodmin and the raising of funds to help disadvantaged and vulnerable young people in Bodmin achieve their potential. The Rotary team believe that the need for the community to provide support and encouragement to Bodmin’s young people has never been greater.
The first phase of this project will be a visual creativity competition. It will be open to all youngsters, aged 5 – 24, living and/or studying in Bodmin and surrounding parishes, and will open for entries for six weeks from the middle of January 2021.The competition has two purposes, to showcase the creative talents of Bodmin's young people and to provide images to create the merchandise to be sold and used as rewards for the Crowdfund campaign we will run in April 2021.
But it is the fund raising that will follow the competition, that is at the heart of this project. Carol Randall, the Brighter Future team leader explained that when Rotary started work on this project, they spoke to Adie Dove, youth activist and founder of KBSK Performing Arts in Bodmin “We were shocked at what she told us about how common it is to find Bodmin’s young people being exploited, using and dealing drugs as young as 12 years old, prostituting themselves, and becomingly increasingly involved in gangs and knife crime. We are determined to raise as much as we can to start to make a positive change for all young people struggling to cope.”
These social problems are closely related to high levels of deprivation. Two of Bodmin’s neighbourhoods are in the 10% most deprived in England. 2018 Dept of Work and Pensions (DWP) data cited that 18.4% of children living in Bodmin are living in low-income homes, compared to 13.2 % across the South West.
It is universally recognised that poverty affects educational attainment. The November 2020 Oxford Consultants for Social Inclusion (OCSI) Bodmin Local Insight Profile contains Dept of Education (D of E) figures that show that only 50.3% of Bodmin’s Year 1 children achieved a good level of development, almost 10% fewer than the England average of 60%. The same report cited that only 20.3 % of Bodmin’s 18-year-olds participated in higher education, compared to an England average of 37.5%.
Poor educational attainment does not improve employment prospects. DWP statistics cite that in Nov 2020 13.8% of Bodmin’s 18-24-year olds were claiming either Job Seekers Allowance or Universal Credit, compared to the 9.5% England average. These numbers have risen dramatically since May 2018 when these figures were 3.3% and 2.9% respectively. We can assume that increase has been caused, at least partly, by the Covid crisis.
The project has already received pledges of financial support from the Bodmin Jail Hotel and Resort and Cornwall Councillor, Leigh Frost’s Community Chest Fund. Carol Randall adds “We are asking the Bodmin community to get behind this project, to make it the amazing success that our young people need it to be if we are to make a significant difference. We are keen to hear from anyone interested to get involved, particularly schools and youth organisations and, of course, potential sponsors. We know time has been rough for many businesses, but we have lots of very affordable sponsorship opportunities from £10 upwards for rewards for our Crowdfund campaign in April/May next year.”
Anyone wanting to know more about the Bodmin Brighter Future project can go to the website at www.bodminbrighterfuture.org . A Bodmin Brighter Future Facebook Group has also been launched to provide an online community for people to share ideas and information regarding helping Bodmin’s young people. You can email the Rotary Brighter Future team on firstname.lastname@example.org
Note to media: Contact for information- email@example.com or call on 07921 279930
Postponing the competition
It is with the greatest regret that we have decided to postpone the Bodmin Brighter Future competition until the Autumn. With the lockdown, closure of schools, uncertainty surrounding the new variant and the rapid increase in Cornwall’s infection rates it is impossible to make plans and we have no idea what the next few months have in store.
The competition needs to have the active engagement of schools and parents and because of all the extra work and challenges they are facing, now is not a good time for them to have anything more to deal with. Leaving it until the autumn will hopefully give us the best chance to roll the competition out and make it the roaring success we need to raise funds to help Bodmin’s children and young people build a brighter future.
But just because we can’t run this competition yet, doesn’t mean we can’t do anything. We know that the poorest families have been hit hardest by previous lockdowns and this one will undoubtedly exacerbate these problems.
We have already started contacting grassroots leaders and organisations to discuss working together to raise funds for any specific emergency needs arising from this lockdown. The focus will still be on children and young people so if you know of any specific needs, have a fundraising idea or would just like to chat about this and get involved in raising funds for young people in Bodmin please get in touch with Carol at firstname.lastname@example.org