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Boom Bus offers bored youngsters something to do
A YOUTH club on wheels is returning to Northolt to offer bored youngsters on an isolated estate something fun and creative to do.
PC Sue Tither, of North Greenford safer neighbourhood team, has fought for over a year to secure funding to bring the Boom Bus back to the Wood End Estate.
After a successful pilot last October, and with the support of £4,800 from the ward forum's annual budget, the free club will kick-off in November for several months.
PC Tither said: "We noticed very quickly that there was nothing on the Wood End Estate for the youngsters, and we were getting complaints from residents of them hanging on street corners.
"They're not bad children up there, there was just not a lot for them to do."
The double-decker bus, which is kitted out with music recording equipment and an X-Box games console, will visit the estate once a week for up to three hours in the evening.
She added: "It's for all ages not just teenagers, a lot of younger kids came down with parents last time; everyone was so enthusiastic about it on the estate.
"What we wanted was to give them something to aim for. They make their own music and learn how to record which teaches them new skills."
Louis Cole, 23, founded the project five years ago and visits many estates across London. This year he has teamed up with ex-offender Ali Niaz who turned his life around to mentor troubled youngsters, once like himself, and encourage them to aim high.
Mr Cole said: "With Ali joining us I'm really excited. When he came last time he was engaging with the older teenagers and speaking their lingo and talking to them about jobs and how they don't need to restrict their outlook."
As well as making music, Mr Cole has plans to do filming projects to make music videos and may set up a cooking class. "It's about what the youngsters want to do, this is their space."
The Boom Bus works closely with the police and a big part of the project is forging lasting relationships between youngsters and officers, who will be on hand to speak to the children in a relaxed environment.
For more information visit www.boombus.co.uk or call the safer neighbourhood team on 020 8721 2914.
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