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Young offenders dig way out of trouble
6:00pm Monday 9th September 2013 in News
YOUNG offenders in Swindon are going green and digging their way out of trouble.
Swindon’s Youth Offending Team is handing over a bumper crop of vegetables to community groups thanks to work being carried out by young offenders on their own allotment.
The young people work in small supervised groups, planting from seed, watering and weeding plants until they are ready to be harvested, and then give them away to charities, including Headway and the Community Cafe in Toothill.
Coun Fionuala Foley, cabinet member for children’s services, said: “This is a fantastic scheme as it offers offenders an opportunity to give something back. The young people clear weeds before planting and nurture flowers and vegetables.
“It is hard work, but a great learning experience and the programme has given them the chance to reflect on how their behaviour has affected local residents.”
The Youth Offending Team has an extensive programme that has helped to keep the town’s offending rates below the national average.
Denise O’Rafferty, the YOT worker in charge of the allotment, said: “This green initiative is a good example of reparation and I would urge anyone able to give up a few hours a week to contact the Youth Offending Team. There are roles for volunteers under expert guidance.”
Contact Blair Staynings on 01793 823153 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.