Funding has been granted to UKSA to put more young people through our successful engagement programmes in a bid to reduce crime and anti-social behaviour.

The Police and Crime Commissioner, Simon Hayes, granted funding to provide two Break Away courses for those in Years 9, 10 and 11 who are identified by the police, the Isle of Wight Council and other partners as at risk of spiralling off-track.

It is hoped the engagement programme will divert the young people away from a life of crime by raising their motivation, self-belief and aspirations, and immersing them within a positive and inspiring environment.

Simon Davies, UKSA Director of Fundraising and Youth Development, explained: “There is a huge need for these intervention programmes we deliver for young people. One in five of the UK’s under-25s are unemployed and that currently costs the taxpayer £20 million a week in Job Seekers Allowance alone. And last year NEETS cost the country £4.7 billion which is more than the budget of Further Education for 16-19 year olds.

“On our courses, primarily through watersports activities, the instructors will be able to promote positive and supportive ways of communicating, safe practice, team work and leadership skills – important life skills which are often lacking in these identified young people.

“The on-going support and encouragement will play an integral part in helping the participants to progress and achieve, but they will also have fun and learn about opportunities to direct their life towards a brighter future.

“This is all about the importance of early intervention – stepping in and offering a different way of life, as a lack of motivation and self-belief are big barriers stopping young people succeeding in today’s society. Our pilot Break Away programme showed us this course is really worth doing and we are very pleased to have secured funding from the Police and Crime Commissioner to establish it properly. We are thrilled to add Break Away to the many worthwhile engagement programmes we provide here at UKSA.”