Tain Pupils to become first Junior Wardens in Ross-shire

group photo taken at launch

On Thursday (17 September) fifteen S1 pupils from Tain Royal Academy will be the first young people in Ross-shire to sign up to become Junior Wardens as part of a joint project between the school, The Highland Council and High Life Highland.

The Junior Warden Scheme aims to provide an alternative and creative way to engage with young people and community groups, promote positive behaviour and encourage active involvement in the local community. The scheme aims to support young people to make a difference where they live and remove barriers to participation.

The scheme in Tain follows on from a very successful pilot in Thurso High School and a programme run at the beginning of this year with pupils from Golspie High School. Following a review of these schemes, the programme has been extended from 12 to 14 weeks to allow pupils to gain their Dynamic Youth Award as well as a Saltire Award for Youth Volunteering.

Over the 14 week programme the young people will pay visits to the Police Scotland Highlands and Islands Division HQ in Inverness, the Fire & Rescue Service and to find out more about the work of these organisations. They will also be taking part in sessions looking at a range of topics including anti-social behaviour, recycling, housing issues and basic first aid. As well as carrying out some practical work in their local community when they join council staff for walkabouts and litter picks.

Thursdays launch event in the Royal Hotel will begin with a welcome by local Councillor Fiona Robertson who is Depute Chair of the Adult and Children’s Services Committee of The Highland Council. She said: “After the success of the programme in Thurso and Golspie I’m delighted that the Council is able to roll-out the project to Tain Royal Academy. For most of the young people taking part this will be their first opportunity to volunteer in their community and I am sure they will find this rewarding.

“The scheme has been tailored to cover a wide range of topics with particular learning opportunities and experience in relation to the environment, health and wellbeing, wider community safety and community development issues affecting the community the young people live in. It involves the young people giving a commitment of their time, energy and effort so I am pleased the group are so motivated. They have already done well in the selection interviews and I’m sure they keen to get started. It’s a great opportunity and I look forward to meeting the Junior Wardens on Thursday and wish them all well in their new roles.”

Joining Councillor Robertson at the launch with be the Area Community Services Manager Tina Luxton and from High Life Highland, Rob Parkes, the local Youth Development Officer. They will also be a short presentation from the Golspie Junior Wardens who will talk about their experiences.

The Tain Junior Wardens taking part are Keiran Hooper, Jane Parkes, Robert Campbell, Antonia Mackie, Katie Mackintosh, Kenzie Innes, Diarmuid Farrell, Alisdair Main, Lewis Gray, Kayleigh Sands, Niamh Beaton, Ryan Nimmons, Hannah Munro, Hailie Triphey and Keiller Ellis.

On completion of the 14 week scheme the Junior Wardens will be presented with a completion certificate, a Saltire Award for Youth Volunteering and a Dynamic Award.

Ian Murray Chief Executive of High Life Highland added: “It is exciting to see all the hard work put in designing the programme by the young people, youth workers and partner organisations coming to fruition with the launch of a scheme that they can be proud of and will have a direct impact on them and their local communities. I am sure it will be a positive and fulfilling experience for everyone involved.”

14 Sep 2015