Mighty oaks from little acorns grow. That is the story of Sheds themselves but also projects.
One such project was a very unusual one starting back in the autumn of 2018 on a bench looking at the beck in Littlebeck. Graham was sat in the sun with Ed Horwood of NYCC Youth Justice Service. Ed had been pointed to Sleights Area Men’s Shed by Steve Angus (famed for being married to Charlotte Angus who quite a few Whitby district Shedders will know). That’s very often how things start, through connections.
What was the benefit to Whitby Sheds when the approach was made? Would it lead to mote people joining the Sheds, for instance? No! It was not the intention and nor has it happened! The intention was simply, like doing a bit of woodwork to help somebody, a case of seeing what could be done to help in a single instance. Help who? A supervisor (Ed) and an unknown young person.
Two things were key to what happened on the one occasion and subsequent interest and engagement over the past 4 years. First, it was Ed’s clear enthusiasm to rehabilitate and restore young people. Second, it chimed particularly with Graham because at one time in his former life Graham had supervised offenders dealt with through “unpaid work” reparation. Graham saw people impacted for the good by a time of supervised work in a community context (indeed a church context!). You discover good in people and they begin to realise for themselves quite often the error of their ways and that there are others in life worse off than they are. This was a massive learning time for Graham and the results of work done are still in evidence 20 years later!
It’s called investing in people!
Thus Ed and Graham connected to build a bridge between two seemingly different worlds. Ed and a young man saw two Sheds in in operation and built two bird boxes requested by the victim who was a third person to join, wanting to put the young man back on the straight and narrow (which is where he really belonged).
Did it all benefit our Shed? Yes. And Ed went on to soon invent and develop a Pop Up Shed concept having not really come across Sheds in his experience before except at home!
The rest of the story is best read by you through links in Ed’s email of today. It is a fantastic story and you will see the numbers of youngsters “helped” through the Pop-Up Shed. The figure in his report were up to August last year and many more youngsters, lads and girls, have benefited.
Good morning Graham
I hope you are well? I promised to let you know when the Youth Justice Board added our Pop-up Shed material to their website.
Here’s a link to it –
The report covers several regions. Click on the North Yorkshire project for an introduction to it. There are two items – a report and a case study. Just click on the bold test in the summary. The Sheds get a mention for your help & inspiration in the former.
It is even more remarkable when one considers that the Pop-Up Shed was interrupted by Covid-19 lockdown. It reinforces that Sheds of all kinds can be so inspirational for people of all kinds including children/young people.
Take a look at the Case Study photos here and the quotes from young people about their experience..North_Yorkshire_YJS_Unpaid_Work_Reparation_Case_Study_August_2022