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Lancaster youth charity awarded £221,400 towards vision for 'creative youth space' in city

A Lancaster-based youth charity has received a £221,400 boost towards its plans for a young people's centre in the city.

Escape2Make (E2M) has been offered three years of funding from the National Lottery to open a ‘test site’ for a creative youth space in Lancaster, likely to be inside an empty shop unit in the city centre.

E2m said "the funding will facilitate numerous benefits for young participants from all walks of life from across the region, including enhanced mental well-being, increased self-belief, and opportunities to positively influence their communities".

Last year, Escape2Make revealed their long-term goal to establish an exciting new building in the heart of the city's Canal Quarter area.

Designs, produced by young people from our district aged 11-18, showed how the Old Brewery in Lancaster could be transformed into a dynamic hub for youngsters in the future.

Jenny Natusch, founder and CEO of E2M, said: "With this funding, we're transitioning from a 'pop-up model' to establishing our first small 'test site' in Lancaster city centre, designed by young people.

"As well as providing more flexible youth programming in addition to our current creative clubs and workshops, the funding will enable us to take the initial stride towards realising our young people's long-term vision for a larger creative, accessible and inclusive space for young people in Lancaster & Morecambe".

E2M aims to help all 11-18s in the Lancaster and Morecambe area to escape from boredom, social media, loneliness and any pressure at school or home by providing workshops and short courses hosted by local businesses, national businesses, local artists and university students.

All the workshops and courses are designed to help young people make things, make friends and make a difference in the community.

Saul Argent, chief operating officer at E2M, said: "This funding allows us to establish our first base in Lancaster, a crucial step to meet the needs of young people amidst the worst mental health crisis in memory.

‘’It also empowers us to expand our reach, providing vital resources and opportunities for personal growth, while empowering our youth to become active contributors to society.

“And it’s not just the young people that benefit. E2M's initiatives will provide valuable opportunities for 90 freelance facilitators as well as youth workers and 60 volunteers to gain skills and experience in the cultural and creative sectors, fostering potential pathways to future employment.”

Read more: PHOTOS: Plans revealed for new multi-million pound youth centre in Lancaster - Beyond Radio

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