A NEW, drop-in youth group is on the cards for Gunnislake after the village has been without a youth facility for several years.

Spearheaded by Gunnislake Community Matters (GCM), the ‘HIVE’ will provide a safe, drop in space for young people aged between 13 and 19 at the Woodland Centre once a week.

The idea of a youth facility has been in the pipeline for some time and work has now progressed to enable to the first session to hopefully be held next month.

Hive will be a part of GCM and affiliated to the ‘Your Way’ young people services of Cornwall Council.

Chair of GCM, and interim chair of Hive, Ross Hanley said: ‘The need to have somewhere in Gunnislake that is warm and safe for the younger people to go has been evident for some time. To start any club, every week volunteers are needed to run it. Several times over the last three years GCM has asked for volunteers to come forward and last September, six people aged 18 upwards expressed an interest.’

‘Since then, a group has been working with “Your Way”. Your Way is an organisation set up by Cornwall Council to oversee services for young people in the county. Your Way has provided guidance and policy templates for setting up Hive. They have also sorted out the enhanced DBS checks for the volunteers.’

In addition to Your Way, Hive has the support of Calstock Parish Council, Gunnislake Village Hall and the Woodland Centre, where the club sessions will be held to start with and the village hall if a larger space is needed.

‘It will be up to those attending the club what they want to do,’ said Ross. ‘The venues have wifi and some will have old style games available, such as Wii and a Play Station, but it is up to the individual members if they want to use these, make pizzas or just relax with mates. As Hive develops, it is hoped that he older members will take on more of the organisation.’

The policies of Hive are now in place, as is an interim management committee.

So far the only funding needed has been for a first aid course for the volunteers, which has been paid for by the parish council and GCM. Local businesses are being asked if they would be willing to sponsor the club.

A spokesperson for Calstock Parish Council said: ‘The parish council are happy to support the Hive youth club.

‘Anything that helps the youth in the area is a great idea. We have supported the volunteers by paying towards first aid courses. We wish them the very best of luck with the project.’

For more information on the Hive, search for ‘Gunnislake Community Matters’ on Facebook.