The Sycamore Project is a Christian based charity, based in the Farnworth area of Bolton, statistically one of the poorest towns in the UK with 39.9% of children living in poverty. They also work with young people in Little Lever and Kearsley.
A lack of activities for young people in the area means many become involved in anti-social behaviour and drug and alcohol misuse.
In March 2000 the project acquired an old pub which they renamed Zac’s Bar and from there they began running a youth project which provides an alcohol free ‘cool’ place where young people can spend their leisure time and stay out of trouble, taking part in activities such as snooker, computer games, music and after-school and 14+ groups.
Zac’s Bar (Sycamore Project) Funding
Initial Provident Good Neighbour funding was provided to set up a gap year scheme which allowed the project to recruit gap year students considering a career in youth work. The workers were provided with training, accommodation, living allowance and free travel. In addition to the benefits for the candidates, the scheme greatly benefitted Zac’s Bar and the young people they serve by allowing them to maintain all existing activities and services for young people and to increase the provision and introduce new sessions. These sessions included one-to-one support, help with homework, arts sessions and special needs sessions. In addition, the young people had access to advice in dealing with any problems they were facing.