Cross community trip a success

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A CROSS-COMMUNITY trip involving two Lurgan Youth Clubs has been described as a success.

Clann Eireann Youth Club and Lurgan Youth Annexe went on a residential weekend staying at Downhill Youth Hostel just outside Coleraine.

The main purpose of this residential was to further build on the extensive work already done in workshops over the past months.

This gave the young people both boys and girls aged between 15-18 and staff alike an opportunity to further explore each others traditions and culture thus creating greater understanding and trust.

With this in mind, both groups travelled into Derry-Londonderry, taking in a visit to the Apprentice Boys Hall.

They where given a guided tour of the Apprentice Boys Museum, which tells the story of The Siege of the City.

They were also given a guided tour of Derry-Londonderry’s Walls, which gave all of those there a more comprehensive understanding of the complex history of the Maiden City.

The group then travelled to the Bogside to visit the Free Derry Museum and have a guided tour of the murals and the story they told.

During this visit the group heard a first hand account of the events of Bloody Sunday from John Kelly, whose brother was shot dead on that terrible day.

This was particularly apt as that weekend was the 40th Anniversary of Bloody Sunday.

The group upon returning to Downhill enjoyed each other’s company with a meal in a local restaurant and then a visit to the cinema.

Both groups informed staff of how much they had enjoyed the day and both groups felt that they had gained a greater respect and understanding of the cultural issues of each other’s respective tradition and history both social and political.

Dee McKerr said: “This residential is just one of a number the two clubs working together will undertake in the months that lie ahead.

“None of this would have been possible without the support of each clubs’ respective management committees, the young people’s parents and the Department of Foreign Affairs in Dublin for providing financial assistance for this programme.

“We are indebted to those mentioned for the support and confidence they place in us to promote and deliver this most important aspect of the Youth Service Curriculum.”