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Posted on 15 February 2019

Vulnerable young people at risk in Stockport show huge improvement in behaviour thanks to Cheshire Freemasons

Young people in Cheshire at risk of substance misuse, truancy, worklessness, criminal activity and other unhealthy lifestyles have shown a massive improvement in behaviour thanks to a grant of £40,000 from Cheshire Freemasons to Acorn Recovery Projects.

Acorn Recovery Projects runs the Right Start Programme, which has been developed to help combat the challenges faced by vulnerable young people in making the transition from teenager to young adult.

During the programme at Werneth School in Stockport, the Students that attended displayed a huge increase in positive behaviour and their Behaviour logs showed a 61 per cent decrease in bad or negative behaviour. This is comparing their behaviour over a 6 week period prior to the programme and the 6 week period during the programme.

Nationally, overall wellbeing among young people has dropped to its lowest level ever, one in four children show some evidence of mental ill health, and 800,000 young people are not in education, employment or training.

Acorn works with young people to counteract the self-defeating behaviours this can cause through a structured programme in a safe environment, and helps them to become more resilient and to boost their self-confidence.

So far, 48 young people have successfully completed the programme and the grant will allow Acorn to develop their services in Cheshire and target key areas of high social deprivation.

The grant from Cheshire Freemasons comes through the Masonic Charitable Foundation, which is funded by Freemasons, their families and friends, from across England and Wales.

Nicola Crompton-Hill, Director of Acorn Recovery Projects, said:

“We’re so grateful for this extremely generous grant from Cheshire Freemasons.

“Thanks to their support, we will be able to provide life changing support to many more vulnerable people through the Right Start programme, which was developed in four local secondary schools in 2016/17.

“We’re delighted to have the chance to build upon this success.”

Stephen Blank, Head of Cheshire Freemasons, said:

“We’re very pleased to be able to support the Right Start project, which does a tremendous amount to help vulnerable young people in Cheshire overcome their disadvantages and make the most of their life chances.

“The program has already paid major dividends in improving the attitude and behaviour of dozens of children and has the potential to help many, many more.”

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