Mindstars CIC who were successful in round two of Operation Payback.
Matthew Neville

Northumbria Police re-launches £150k funding for community groups to curb anti-social behaviour this summer

School children, particularly in deprived areas are “crying out for fun activities over the summer holidays” to help stop them getting in trouble with the law, says Police and Crime Commissioner Kim McGuinness, as she launches a new funding opportunity for local communities

Today the Commissioner has re-opened her Operation Payback funding pot with more than £150k up for grabs. She is inviting local youth groups and community groups to apply for a share and is looking to hear new activity ideas that would help curb summer anti-social behaviour across the region.

Operation Payback uses cash criminals have taken from communities in the Northumbria Police Force area and puts it back into projects and initiatives that make a difference to the places that need it most.

The aim of the fund is to support the work of Northumbria Police and help prevent crime and anti-social behaviour, which will in turn improve lives for local people. PCC Kim McGuinness wants to see positive activities such as sports tournaments, dance classes and DJ-ing workshops fill the summer holidays, especially for those less fortunate in the North East.

She hopes to get a range of ideas to cover all six local authority areas, Northumberland, Newcastle, Sunderland, North Tyneside, South Tyneside and Gateshead, and aims to have funding allocated in time for kids breaking up from school for the summer.

Northumbria Police and Crime Commissioner, Kim McGuinness, said: “So many families really feel the pressure of the summer holidays and in some cases. Especially when money is tight, or mam and dad are working, kids get left to their own devices with little to do.

“That’s just the way it is. It’s a real help to parents to know there are places their kids can go and things they can do. The ‘Cost of Living’ crisis is hitting far too many people, particularly in our region, and not everyone can afford days out at theme parks or to jet off somewhere sunny.

“So, this is me asking young people and asking communities: what do they want to have on offer, on their doorstep, to help keep them entertained. There’s no better use for cash seized from crime than channelling it right back into communities to help prevent more crime.”

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