A new youth justice programme is set to educate young offenders on the Fylde about the consequences of their actions.

AFC Fylde Community Foundationhas been commissioned by the Lancashire Police and Crime Commissioner to deliver a flagship youth justice and education programme called Writing Wrongs, which will run for six-months and is aimed at youngsters between the ages of 12 and 18 who have committed minor offences or are on the verge of offending.

Delivered in partnership with Lancashire Constabulary and the local neighbourhood policing unit, Writing Wrongs is a practical engagement tool for practitioners working with young people that uses restorative approaches to engage them in the process and prevent them entering or re-entering the criminal justice system.

Tom Hutton, director of community development at AFC Fylde, commented: “This is the first time a programme such as Writing Wrongs has been delivered in the Fylde area, and our work with 2,000 people each week puts us in an ideal position to tackle the important issue of youth offending.

“With partners such as the Police and Crime Commissioner and Lancashire Constabulary on board, we’re confident it will make a huge difference to the lives of young people in the local community.”

Clive Grunshaw, the Lancashire Police and Crime Commissioner, added: “Restorative justice is something I firmly believe in, both because of the benefits it has for victims but also because of the positive impact it can have on helping offenders turn their lives around. This is particularly important when it comes to young people, and giving them the help and support they need to make different choices, to give them different options and to ensure they do not become involved in more serious offending. It is vital these young people have the chance to understand the consequences of their actions, with the intention of better equipping them to make alternative choices in the future. I am delighted to be able to support this programme with £3,014 of funding.”

Jonjo Goodwin, 18, from St Anne’s, has been volunteering for the AFC Fylde Community Foundation for six months and is now employed as an Assistant Coach as part of his apprenticeship from North Lancs Training Group.

He said: “I’m very grateful for the opportunity AFC Fylde Community Foundation has given me. If it wasn’t for their courses, I’m sure I would still be out on the streets getting into trouble.

“No two days are ever the same in this job, from teaching yoga in nursery to delivering football lessons for older kids in primary school. I’ve enjoyed it so much that I’m now considering a full-time career in coaching once I’ve completed my apprenticeship.”

Restorative Justice and Education Services produces the Writing Wrongs resource for youth justice organisations and schools and delivers all training related to the programme. Restorative Justice and Education Services is a member of the Restorative Justice Council.

The five-week courses commence in February and consist of one-to-one and group sessions to encourage young people to address the motives for offending and to gauge the full impact on the victims and wider community.

To find out more about the programme, please call Tom Hutton on 07739 796 101.