Commissioner’s Proceeds of Crime Fund provides activities for young people in Wakefield (13 Apr 2017)

Mark Burns-Williamson, West Yorkshire's Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC) visited Disability Sport Yorkshire (DYS) this week to see how their Safer Communities Fund project to provide diversionary activities and opportunities for young people was going.

DYS received £4197 from Mark's Safer Communities Fund which provides grants using money recovered from criminals under the Proceeds of Crime Act (POCA).

The money is being used to fund sport and recreational activities, healthier eating groups and team building sessions for local young people who are experiencing difficulties. The aim of which is to improve general behaviour at home and in school with further benefits to learning and wellbeing.

The project is also looking to reduce anti-social behaviour in the local community and give young people a sense of achievement and a safe environment to be in away from the streets.

Disability Sport Yorkshire (formerly the Federation of Disability Sports Organisations) was founded in 1993. The new organisation brought together under one umbrella four existing regional disability sports organisations. Their main aim is to address the inequality in access to sport for disabled people. The project funded by the Safer Communities Fund is a further area of work for the organisation.

Mark said: "It was fantastic to see first-hand the dedication of Disability Sport Yorkshire who are doing some brilliant work in the community to provide opportunities and inspiration for young people.

"It's heart-warming to see money which was so rightly taken away from criminals funding such worthwhile initiatives.

"The next round of the safer Communities Fund opens for applications on 24 April with £200,000 available. For more information visit my website www.westyorkshire-pcc.gov.uk."

Wayne Ball, Community Development Officer at Disability Sport Yorkshire said: "We have had quite a few children attend the sessions and we, along with our local PCSO, feel there has been a vast improvement in behaviour throughout the project. We have children for a number of different schools which is providing them with the opportunity to socialize and gain new friends from outside their normal routine. We believe the project is an on-going success and hopefully will continue to help the local community"

To find out more about Disability Sport Yorkshire visit http://disabilitysportyorkshire.org/

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