Landscape Group helps youngsters in innovative community project

The Landscape Group has donated materials, tools and expertise to a community project which has helped a number of young people get their lives back on track.

Sudbury Town Council and local businesses worked with volunteers from charity Catch 22 and community project Be Active to look after areas such as a local BMX Park.

Several schemes aim to help young people, some of whom have been in trouble with the authorities, to work on community projects as part of their reparation.

"The scheme has so far been successful not only in improving the environment for residents but by helping to turn around the lives of some of the young people involved," said a council spokeswoman.

"One young worker, Charlotte, has gained so much from the project she has since returned to college and is determined to improve her prospects as a direct result of the programme."

Other groups to donate kit include MTM Hire and Ernest Doe. The equipment has now been permanently handed over to Sudbury Town Council by the sponsors for use on future cleaning and maintenance projects throughout the area.

Landscape Group contract manager Graham Masters said: "We have a close relationship with the council and were delighted to provide materials and offer support. The results are fantastic and the young people have done a great job cleaning up the BMX park."

Catch 22 mentoring officer Louise Barnett said: "Many of the young people we work with have shown positive improvements in their outlook since working on these projects. Having been given this second chance they are paying back the community.

"But they are also gaining in confidence by seeing the results of their hard work pay off. It has also made them less afraid of approaching authority figures elsewhere and being a part of their communities."

Sudbury town clerk Sue Brotherwood said: "This proves that when business and other organisations working together the whole community benefits.  Those working with Catch 22, gain work and life experience and the work they complete improves the environment."

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