Needs of the local Community
Looe, like many coastal towns, may evoke childhood images of fish and chips, ice-cream and a paddle in the clear blue sea. Perhaps it comes as a surprise to learn that coastal towns are among some of our most deprived communities in the U.K.
These communities suffer from a number of issues that are rooted in the decline of their core industries. Domestic tourism has been hit by cheap package holidays abroad, more traditional industries such as fishing, ship building and port activities have been in long term decline. This combined with their location being geographically on the very margins of the country with poor transport links and infrastructure leads to a struggling economy and a lack in services such as health and education.
For those seaside resorts which retain a more vibrant tourist industry it comes as a mixed blessing. Tourism brings much needed revenue to the economy, but work is seasonal and low paid. These resorts also attract ‘incomers’ and second home owners inflating house prices, beyond the reach of locals.
In a recent paper entitled “Forget about the North-South divide, children in coastal communities are being left behind” Professor Sheena Asthana Director of Plymouth Institute of Health and Care Research wrote; “…. there has been a profound shift in the pattern of deprivation away from cities and towards coastal areas.
In coastal areas low education and work expectations can contribute to low levels of aspiration; ‘nothing-to-lose’ attitudes may in turn shape risk for harmful behaviours in adolescence. There is a distinctly peripheral pattern to rates of self-harm, hospitalisation for alcohol and substance use, and rates of children in care.” https://www.plymouth.ac.uk/news/pr-opinion/forget-about-the-north-south-divide-children-in-coastal-communities-are-being-left-behind
Our Young People
Supporting young people in Coastal Communities
After the previous youth club in Looe closed its doors in December 2018, a vision started to emerge for a dedicated youth facility in Looe. The vision was shaped by a consultation project with a wide range of local young people and other stakeholders. The consultation was a collaborative exercise with support from Looe Churches Together, Looe Town Council and local charity Rusty Bucket.
We worked with Looe Harbour Commissioners to identify a suitable space that could be leased and turned into a dedicated place for young people.
After being stalled because of the restrictions of the Covid-19 pandemic Boundless Trust was formed as a Charitable Incorporated Organisation in January 2021 and we were later able to open the doors of our premises The Haven in July 2021.