Volunteers and donations needed to help more Wiltshire children through Youth Adventure Trust

Wiltshire Times: Canoeing is just one of the physical challenges faced by the youngsters during the Youth Adventure Trust programme intended to foster self-esteem and resilience Canoeing is just one of the physical challenges faced by the youngsters during the Youth Adventure Trust programme intended to foster self-esteem and resilience

MP Claire Perry appealed for volunteers and donations to help the Youth Adventure Trust at its official relaunch at Brokerswood Country Park, Westbury, on Saturday.

The charity helps vulnerable young people across Wiltshire to improve their aspirations, self-esteem, confidence and resilience through challenging outdoor activities.

Those chosen follow a three-year programme costing £3,000 a person which includes 22 activity days throughout the year.

It is paid for by the charity through the donations received from individuals and local businesses.

Since 1992 it has helped over 3,600 young people across Wiltshire.

It also relies on a team of 180 unpaid volunteers to take them through the programme and act as positive role models.

Demonstrating her tree-climbing ability on the day was Bryony Hoolison,14, from King-down School, Warminster, who is in her third and final year.

She said: “It has taught me not to be scared, to give things a go and make the most of the opportunities that you have got.”

Callum Grant, 14, from Melksham Oak Community School, also in the final year, said: “I have learned that if you support others, they will support you.

“When I first came I did not know anyone, but made friends quickly.

“I found mountain climbing the biggest challenge because I did not like heights, but I love it now.”

Chairman of the trust, Jon Scourse, said: “Young people come to us from a variety of backgrounds. Many are young carers or children from single-parent families with often chaotic and unstable home lives.

“Growing up in such environments puts children at severe disadvantage over their peers, so the trust sets out to provide an opportunity for them to learn new skills and gain confidence.”

Mrs Perry, the MP for Devizes, said: “I want to help the charity support more vulnerable young people in our region.

“We can see from the young people here what a difference the organisation is making.”

For more information on donating or volunteering visit www.youthadventuretrust.org.uk

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