Despite more showers than sunshine, the smiling faces on the young people enjoying fun at this year’s Goal Line Summer School brightened up the days.
Set in Chambers Park, Portadown, the Goal Line centre comprises of a sports hall area, a computer suite, art room and multi-activity area with tuck shop and kitchen and a multi-sensory zone.
Almost everything that is good and enjoyable for young people is on one site.
There was scope for everyone whether they were involved in the Goal Line Inclusion Summer Programme - a programme offered to young people between the ages of 7 to 17 with disability, and their siblings, in association with the Southern Health and Social Care Trust Children with Disabilities Team – or the annual Goal Line Junior Scheme which attracted well over 50 young people each day or the Transform Senior Scheme.
Amongst the many activities on offer this summer were arts and crafts (with the clay monsters a big hit!), indoor cricket, mini-golf, bowling, archery, pizza making, group games, block games, music, swimming, computer games plus DVDs and more.
Additionally in the Inclusion Programme some enjoyed the benefits of the superb sensory zone at the club whilst others developed by showing what they could do in the weekly showcase event, be it singing, dancing or some other form of entertainment which for many is a huge individual step.
The Waves Leisure Complex in Lurgan proved a popular day out.
A spokesperson for the group said: “Behind the obvious and important fun element the activities and events for young people are designed to help them in terms of individual skills, communication, learning and of course they form valuable friendships.
“The Inclusion Programme remains an important part of the summer scheme. It is always highly regarded and recognised by parents in the context of reducing isolation for their child, improving their child’s ability to communicate and their self-confidence. The staff and volunteers at Goal Line essential in ensuring that the schemes not only took place but that the young people were safe throughout.
“Also highly successful this year was the Transform Senior Scheme which kick-started the entire summer programme with in-centre sessions for the senior group. This group of young people enjoyed team games and tasks including cookery and archery as well as trips to local venues for trampolining and mini-golf and an excursion to Tayto Park. The group continued to meet weekly throughout the summer and visited places throughout Ireland including Castlewellan Forest Park, the Ulster Museum and Dublin Zoo. The Transform scheme was run in association with YouthLink Transform Project.”
The summer scheme has been running for over two decades thanks to funding from ABC Council, the Southern Health and Social Care Trust, and the Woodward Charitable Trust. For more information on Goal Line Youth Club check out their Facebook page.