Over 450 young people were the stars at a celebration of achievement evening held on Thursday April 7 at Bearwood College Theatre.
Groups linked to Wokingham Borough Council’s Youth Service showcased their achievements over the last year in an evening of entertainment and demonstrations. The evening ended with 140 of the 450 young people being presented with achievement certificates - all of them gaining National Accredited Awards for their personal development and achievement across the year.
The event was organised by a team of 10 young people who had been working on its development over the last five months. During this time, they were supported by youth workers and technicians. The planning and development of the celebration of achievement evening was captured on video and highlights were shown on the night.
The evening’s compère was deputy youth MP Jay Newton, along with two members of youth forum - Y10 - Subi Wahogo and Josh Hutchins. The audience - made up of young people, their friends and family plus local dignitaries including the Borough Mayor Cllr Dianne King and members of children’s services - were treated to a series of sketches, music and presentations by young people, demonstrating the impact of youth work on their lives over the past year.
Musical entertainment was provided by members of Silverdale Youth Centre’s fusion project. The evening started with Dreadwing - a five person rock group who are now playing public performances - and then later in the evening Emily Charlotte Haynes and Connor Turner sang songs accompanied by a guitar and keyboard.
Young people from Wokingham Youth Centre demonstrated their stunt skills following workshops with stunt professionals and Bulmershe Explorers Extreme group showcased their street safety work.
The young mums’ group Lunchkins and Munchkins spoke of their prevention work with girls using virtual babies as well as details about their residential trip with own babies and children. Members of the Early Extreme Sports (EXS) talked about their work to raise money for the new skate park at Soel Joel Park in Earley and members of Muslim Girls’ Group Hira (named after a cave near Mecca) gave a presentation.
Through video and pictures, young people from Centrepoint and Wokingham youth centres explained how their achievements over the last year had increased their confidence and esteem. They also outlined their plans for the coming year.
Following the acts, Borough Mayor Cllr King and other dignitaries presented certificates to the young people. The curtain opened to the sounds of McFly ‘All about you’ and with streamers and confetti coming down, the young people soaked up the audience’s applause.