Kirklees charity supporting young people with Down syndrome (4 July 2018)

Huddersfield based charity, Shabang Inclusive Learning, are using money recovered from criminals under the Proceeds of Crime Act to help safeguard young people with Down syndrome.

Shabang received £4600 for their project, The Up Club Extra, to run some special extra sessions to help local young people with Down syndrome stay safe.

They are delivering a series of drama based workshops which use role play to explore situations and give strategies on how to deal with them. The sessions are improving confidence in the young people giving them techniques and methods to deal with difficult situations that could potentially put them at risk.

The sessions help to improve clear communication and give the young people a chance to practice what to do and when to do it. It helps them to recognise, and deal with, appropriate and inappropriate behaviour, give appropriate responses, keep their personal belongings safe and when to ask for help.

The £4600 grant came from Mark Burns-Williamson, West Yorkshire's Police and Crime Commissioner's Safer Communities Fund which returns money recovered from criminals to West Yorkshire communities for good causes.

Mark visited Shabang on Monday evening (02/07) to see their project in action and take part in some of the activities. He said: "Safeguarding those that are more vulnerable to crime and abuse is one of my top and I am I delighted to be able to provide Shabang Inclusive Learning with this funding.

"It is a sad fact of life that there are people out there who will look to take advantage of vulnerable situations given the opportunity, so it's crucial that community organisations such as Shabang deliver these kind of sessions.

"It was my pleasure to meet and thank the team behind the sessions who are doing really worthwhile and rewarding work, along with some of the service users who are a fantastic group of people."

Kim Reuter, Project Delivery Officer at Shabang Inclusive Learning, said: "The funding has made a massive difference to local children and young people with Down syndrome. It has allowed us to explore new aspects of role play, helping the young people to manage the outside world more effectively and stay safe."

To find out more about Shabang visit

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