A NEW youth centre was officially opened in Alvechurch by Bromsgrove MP Sajid Javid last Friday (October 9) after the building that houses it was given a massive revamp.
The Lounge now has an American diner theme – the choice of teenagers living in the village – thanks to a lottery grant, Bromsgrove District Council and Alvechurch Parish Council.
The furniture includes red and cream chairs and, in keeping with the theme, there are metallic signs and pictures of American scenes, such as New York with their iconic yellow taxis.
There is a Youth Diner there from 3.30pm to 5pm on Tuestays and Thursdays – after school drop-ins for those aged ten and over.
On Tuesdays from November 3, there will be a Junior Youth Clun for ten to 13-year-olds from 6pm to 8pm and, on Thursdays, there will be a Youth @ Social Club between 6pm and 8pm for young people aged 13 and over.
The refurbishment of the cafe was carried out so The Lounge could become an ASDAN (Award Scheme Development and Accreditation) centre and offer a ‘Lvl Up!’ course for young people.
That starts every Wednesday from November 4.
The course is split into a number of sessions which include a variety of modules which the young people can choose.
Among them are career exploration, CV and cover letter writing, interview skills, driving theory, driving safely, transport methods and gaining independence, such as money management.
ASDAN is a curriculum development organisation and awarding body, offering more than 100 programmes and qualifications which help young people acquire skills for learning, employment and life in general.
Although there are no age restrictions, the main focus is on those aged between 13 and 19.
At the official opening, local skiffle group The Six-Five Special performed live and Mr Javid cut the ribbon to officially open it.
He said: “Everyone who’s helped bring this brilliant community hub together should be very proud of their achievement.
“The renovated Lounge is a real asset for the village, and I’m sure it will continue to provide an inviting space, for young people and silver surfers alike, for many years to come.”
For more on the Alvechurch Lounge and the Lvl Up! course, call 0121 445 5512, visit alvechurchlounge.org.uk or search for ‘Youth-at The-Lounge Alvechurch’ on Facebook.