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Archery group engages the community and transforms lives

Archery group engages the community and transforms lives

 

When residents in an East Ayrshire neighbourhood set up an Archery Group in January 2012 there were doubts about its viability. More than five years later and the group is a thriving pillar of the community.

Attracting adults and young people, the group has led to increased levels of social interaction in the area. Participants have gained the motivation to improve their life circumstances, acquired new skills and qualifications, and developed a heightened sense of belonging to the community.

Key Achievements:

  • 26 archery instructors trained from within the group since the start of the project with 15 of these still active on the project.
  • Transformational outcomes for individuals in terms of health and employment, many based on the confidence they have gained through running the group and becoming trustees of an incorporated organisation:
    • Several have re-engaged with training and employment including some who had not worked for a significant period prior to joining the group.
    • Others have made conscious decisions to reduce their alcohol and drugs consumption in recognition of their role supporting young people and adults.
    • For others, the group has helped them overcome anxiety and mental and physical health issues which had contributed to their social isolation.
    • A few have used their experience as a catalyst to get involved in local democratic structures.
  • Acceptance of the group as a ‘pillar of the community’ – referenced as a success by other bodies including the East Ayrshire Council.
  • Presenting at the National Convention on Community Safety in front of 150 professionals.
  • The Group reducing its financial dependency upon Link Up and becoming largely self-funding.
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