Hosted by Councillor Lisa Mulherin, the Executive Board member for Children and Families, the reception celebrated some of the amazing young people, businesses and organisations that have been involved in the Child Friendly Leeds journey so far. Complete with birthday cake and custom made ‘thumbs up’ biscuits, golden Child Friendly Leeds pin badges were awarded to the young people and projects involved, and in recognition of the initiative’s ambassadors.
Kicking off with performances from Project Hip Hop, who are based at First Floor, a venue for young people with learning difficulties at the West Yorkshire Playhouse, the entertainment continued with a stunning performance from the Northern School of Contemporary Dance.
The event also saw the launch of the Child Friendly Leeds Fund which will help corporate fundraising teams raise money to support enhancement opportunities for vulnerable children and young people in the city. Launched by Leeds City Council in partnership with Leeds Community Foundation, the fund will support young people with special educational needs, children living in poverty, young people leaving care and migrant children. Introducing the Fund, Pip Goff of Leeds Community Foundation said:
“We are delighted to launch the Child Friendly Leeds Fund today – the aim of which is to raise funds to support enrichment and learning opportunities for those children and young people across the city that may otherwise not be able to access them.”
“We hope that our partners, individuals, businesses and organisations across the city will support the Fund through making donations and having fundraising activities.amazi”
Throughout the event, the amazing impact that Child Friendly Leeds has made in the city and for its young people was made clear. We heard from many of the fantastic organisations and inspiring young people who have contributed to projects such as the UK Youth parliament, Have A Voice Council and The Care Leavers Council.
Speaking at the event, Director of Children and Families Services, Steve Walker, praised their achievements, but also stressed there was still much to do make sure Leeds is a fantastic city for young people to grow up in.
“Today is about acknowledging and recognising what we have achieved together, but it is also about acknowledging that we still have a lot more to do and still need your help and support.”
The 5th birthday celebrations continued with a weekend of free, fun activities on 22nd and 23rd July, where the whole city was invited to help Leeds City Council achieve its bold ambition to be a truly child friendly city.
More information about the Child Friendly Leeds Fund: www.leedscf.org.uk/child-friendly-leeds-fund
To support The Child Friendly Leeds Fund, please visit https://mydonate.bt.com/fundraisers/childfriendlyleedsfund to donate.