Youth work team named as best in the north east

Blyth's Silx Teen Bar staff members are seen celebrating their North East Youth work award 2012, awarded for 'Outstanding Voluntary Youth Sector Team'- (left to right-back four) Ray Oliver, June Black, Kay Gallagher, Jen Usher and (front) Jackie Long-Senior Youth Worker.
Blyth's Silx Teen Bar staff members are seen celebrating their North East Youth work award 2012, awarded for 'Outstanding Voluntary Youth Sector Team'- (left to right-back four) Ray Oliver, June Black, Kay Gallagher, Jen Usher and (front) Jackie Long-Senior Youth Worker.

YOUTH workers in Blyth have won a regional award.

Silx Teen Bar, in Church Street, won the prize for outstanding voluntary youth sector team at the inaugural North East Youth Work Awards at Sunderland’s Stadium of Light.

More than 150 guests attended the ceremony, organised by the Gateshead-based Regional Youth Work Unit North East, to see ten awards handed out to individuals and organisations for their commitment to youth work.

Silx Teen Bar has been arranging youth projects and activities for 16 years, catering for 20,000 young people over the last three years.

Its director, Chris Antony, said: “It was such a shock to win this award.

“Our youth team has been with us for a very long time and are outstanding, and this award proves it.

“They have built fantastic relationships with local young people and they go beyond their call of duty. I am really proud of what they have achieved.”

A second prize for south east Northumberland was won by Maurice Bransfield.

He was named as the region’s best statutory youth service manager after impressing the judges with his leadership of Northumberland County Council’s youth service and the development of Youth Work Northumberland, a collaboration between the local authority and the voluntary sector.

Maurice said: “Receiving the award was a great honour for me personally but made even more so by the fact that Silx Teen Bar also won the award in its category.

“Youth Work Northumberland is demonstrating every day the added benefits of sectors working together to improve outcomes for young people.

“I believe that both awards reflect that strategy of collaborative working. The awards are very special.”