A local community centre in one of Newcastle’s poorest areas is celebrating a £100k boost from the North of Tyne Combined Authority (NTCA), headed by mayor Jamie Driscoll.
The historic Carnegie Building in Benwell in Newcastle’s West End, which houses a number of charities and community projects, received the funding to help local people in the area, many of them from minority and migrant communities.
The money comes as part of a wider £1.5m investment, by the NTCA, into community-led work across Newcastle, North Tyneside, and Northumberland, a promise set out in mayor Driscoll’s election manifesto.
The Children & Families Newcastle Hub offers key services, free of charge, from antenatal support for new mothers to welfare rights advice to vital first aid training. It also provides office space for several small grassroots charities, such as Sidestep, which works closely with young people at risk of criminal exploitation.
Mayor Jamie Driscoll said: “If you had a fire in your kitchen, you’d put it out immediately. You wouldn’t say: ‘we don’t have the budget to fix this right now.’
“Likewise, supporting people early on can steer that teenager away from a potential life of crime. We can help that older resident who may be lonely and isolated to maintain their independence. We can save that struggling jobseeker from mental and financial crisis.
“Community centres like these are lifelines for helping local people. We’ll save ourselves a fortune and ensure everyone can participate in our society.”
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