Ryan runs a youth club in Gainsborough Community Library in the IP3 area of Ipswich, an area where there is not a lot of money.
He started the project with Sasha when he was fourteen and she was just thirteen. They had no resources, apart from a broken pool table. The library manager gave them the use of a community room and it started from there. They spent their own money to deliver a range of activities for young people in the area. The activities included arts and crafts, cooking and healthy eating, games and quizzes. The young people who attend have developed friendships, learned new skills and gained in confidence, several of them are now actively volunteering in their library, helping out in a range of different ways.
By working with the group Ryan's confidence and skills grew. He is now considering going to university. The group have now received two grants from local councillors and have organised a graffiti project. The graffiti board stands in the library grounds and carries lots of images of the area and the club’s tag.
O2 was so impressed by Ryan’s commitment and energy they gave the group money for materials which was spent on art and cooking materials and equipment. The giant cheque is pride of place on Ryan’s bedroom wall.