Town Council Has New Portfolio Holder for Youth

Cllr Julie Cordiner , newly elected Portfolio Holder for Youth at Bridgwater Town Council

 At the last Bridgwater Town Council meeting  Cllr Julie Cordiner (Labour, Bridgwater Victoria) was elected to be the new Portfolio Holder for Youth and immediatly agreed to re-launch the Youth Council with a meeting at the Town Hall on Friday 6th December at 4.30 pm. She said “We are asking the 4 secondary schools – Haygrove, Robert Blake, Chilton Trinity and Bridgwater College Academy, plus Bridgwater & Taunton College to send up to 3 representatives to take part in that meeting, where they will have a chance to vote on the Town Council’s Youth Budget and to control their own agenda for future meetings”.   In a new move she added “We recognise that schools sending ‘Year 11s’ has been problematic due to exams and so we are therefore extending the offer to send reps from year 9 upwards if you wish.

Grant applications can now be made by anyone with a valid project that will benefit young people aged between 11 and 18 in the Bridgwater area . The young delegates will be invited to scrutinise grant applications submitted for youth activities and make awards up to £500 per project. This category has £6,115 available.

A second Youth Council Project Fund has been set up whereby delegates have a sum of £2,715 for them to allocate to any additional projects which they may bring to the meeting or devise amongst themselves. These projects should be costed and fit a category approved by the Youth Council.

The Mayor, Cllr Tony Heywood, has also asked Cllr Cordiner to let the Youth Council decide if the ‘Youth Awards’ event should happen in 2019-20 and if they would wish to organise the event.

Haygrove students quick off the mark

Haygrove elects it’s delegates (Amelia, Kaylem and Imogen)

Three students from Haygrove School have been chosen to be part of the Bridgwater Town Youth Forum . Year 10 students Amelia Cadmore, Kaylem Higgins and Imogen Sparkes were selected for the Youth Forum by teacher and Director of International Studies, Mrs Kirsty Collinge, because of their commitment as school Global Goals Leaders who are tasked with raising awareness amongst students of two key global goals: gender equality and climate action. “These three young people have been so enthusiastic as leaders and very vocal in their views on these two important global issues that they were the natural choice when I was contacted to nominate Haygrove students to the Youth Forum, “ said Mrs Collinge.

Amelia, Kaylem and Imogen said, “We are really looking forward to having this opportunity to talk about our global goals with students from other schools and members of the local council.  We want to make sure that our views and opinions are heard and that the right actions are taken to bring about some of the changes we would like to see. It is a priviledge to be representing our fellow Haygrove students in this way.”

Youth Grant Information

Cllr Cordiner said “The aim of the Youth Grant is to highlight youth provision in the town of Bridgwater, to add value to existing providers and to encourage new and additional initiatives. The target age range is agreed at 11-18. The amount of grant per applicant will not normally exceed £500. If your application is for a higher amount this will be considered on its merits. Funding could be available for general running expenses, specific projects, staff, resources, equipment, programmes, residential. Grants will only be payable to organisations with a recognised bank account. Applicants must have in place appropriate Health and Safety and Child protection policies. Applications promoting religious or party-political beliefs will not be considered. Applications must be developed with the involvement of the young people who will benefit from the award.  Bids will be considered and evaluated by Bridgwater Youth Council who will make recommendations to the Town Clerk for decision. Applicants must spend the allocated money within the financial year and an end of funding evaluation report must be submitted within 4 weeks of the project end date.”

Julie Cordiner

The Process for grant applications is as follows

  1. Groups submit their application before the deadline of 12pm Wed 4 Dec 2019
  2. Applications will be considered by the Youth Council on Fri 6th Dec 2019 at 4.30pm
  3. Applicants will be notified of the decision and if accepted will be required to sign an acceptance form
  4. Grants are paid to successful applicants
  5. Applicant to complete and funding evaluation report within 4 weeks of the project end date.

You can access the Grant application form on the Town Council website

Cllr Julie Cordiner represents the Victoria Ward of Bridgwater. She is a Primary School teacher with 5 children aged between 12 and 23. Julie was born in Bridgwater but has lived in Australia, Malaysia and Kent. She is currently studying a ‘Masters Degree’ in ‘Early Years Education’ which includes the theme of Children’s Participation in Democracy. Julie says “I believe the Youth Council is going to be a success because I really believe that children do have a right to be represented in their communities”