The Prince of Wales Youth Club based in Military Road Canterbury, has been honoured with the Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service. This is the highest award a group in the voluntary sector can receive and is the equivalent to an MBE. The award was set up in 2002 to mark the Queen’s Golden Jubilee.
Firstly, we would like to congratulate All of our Volunteers past and present as our service and its foundations are built on Volunteering and we couldn’t achieve what we do without you, so a big well done!
The Prince of Wales Youth Club has been at the Centre of community life for the City’s Northgate Ward since the middle of the last century, the range of activities currently on offer is truly staggering, from trampolining to mountain climbing, football to martial arts, cooking to brick laying and many more! But to the hundreds of young people who regularly attend, the club is more than the activities on offer - Joey the Centre Co-ordinator explained “our abiding principle is to provide a healthy and educational hub in a safe environment for youngsters from six to eighteen years of age. We give the Children direction in life and provide them with the tools that will enable them to progress into adulthood and become model members of the community.”
Our newest ventures include: a new Boxing Academy (Prince of Wales Boxing Academy) which is run by an ex-member Kevin Place and Martin Mckelvie, and a Ladies Football club (Prince of Wales Ladies football club) run also by ex-members.
In addition to the activities on offer in the main Youth Club, the centre is also home to other organisations including the Canterbury Judo Club, TK Power Taekwondo and DAPA one of Canterbury’s leading Dance Academies. The fully equipped kitchens allow young people to acquire culinary skills and provides a kitchen and catering element for events. Joey again explained, “the income we generate from hiring out space to other groups whose aims are sympathetic and complimentary to the Youth Club has allowed us to maintain and grow our main activities. In the current climate of funding cutbacks, we have managed to prosper thanks to careful financial management and the generous local support – in particular from the Canterbury Rotary Club”.
The Queen’s Award will be presented later in the year and will be the springboard for a host of new initiatives at the club. Alan Lingham, the Chairman of the Trustees, spoke movingly about the honour of receiving such prestigious national recognition for this local resource. “We intend to use the Award to create a number of sustainable and lasting legacies that will guarantee the future of the club for many years to come” he said.
Joey and his partner Sue recently attended a garden party at Buckingham Palace in recognition of the Prince of Wales Youth Clubs hard work.
Long may it prosper and continue to enrich the lives of all those young people who attend the club and use the facilities.
To find out more about the award and what this means for the club, please follow the link: