Popular youth club in Beccles under threat

The Thirst Youth club based at St Luke's church, Beccles may be forced to close due to lack of funds

The Thirst Youth club based at St Luke's church, Beccles may be forced to close due to lack of funds. (Left to right) Lolly Cowley, Jo Fulcher and Jackie Ball outside St Luke's Church. - Credit: Nick Butcher

It is a place for young people in Beccles to go and spend time with friends and interact with others - but The Thirst Youth Club, held at St Luke’s Church, is on the verge of closing.

After funding cuts the popular club, which has 60 youngsters on its books, is battling to keep providing the much-needed service.

“We’ve only got enough funding to keep us running until the end of June,” said youth worker Joanna Fulcher. “We’re struggling for funding and we’ve applied for a Children In Need grant but it’s not looking very good.”

The service runs every Friday for 11 to 18-year-olds and offers more than just a place when young people can go and play pool.

Projects including teaching youngsters basic cooking skills and participation groups to build self-confidence are provided.

Normally held on a Monday night, the sessions are currently on hold due to the funding shortage.

Ms Fulcher said: “We offer advice to young people on relationships and contraception because we are all trained. It’s good because young people feel like they don’t have anyone to talk to but we can help them with things like school.”

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The club, which opened six years ago and runs from 6.30pm to 9pm, has four full time staff but are also looking for volunteers as another way of helping the club survive.

“This club gets a lot of young people off the street,” added Ms Fulcher. “If we close they don’t have the extra support. And then they’ll be back out on the streets again.”

To help with funding or volunteering contact Joanna on 07510326590.