Downham Market support group to help young parents

Young parents will be able to get advice and meet other mums and dads at a dedicated support group which is relaunching next month.

The Downham Youth Project used to host the popular informal sessions for parents up to the age of 25 in hired rooms around the town.

The group was stopped last year as the project's team prepared to open a permanent base, opposite the Howdale Community Centre, in Downham Market.

But with the youth hut now up and running, project manager Ben Hyde said the support group would start up again on February 4.

He said: 'The parents can use this group to meet and make connections with other young parents in their community in a comfortable environment.

'They are also able to use the internet suite here so we can help them look for jobs as well as give them advice on benefits and further education.'

The Downham Youth Project started in 2007 because there were fears about youngsters causing anti-social behaviour in the town.

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The group relied heavily on hired rooms to run after-school clubs and evening youth caf�s to get the town's youngsters off the streets.

But now, almost four years on, the project is going from strength to strength with youngsters flocking to the youth hut, close to Downham Market High School, on Tuesdays from 3pm to 5pm and Thursday evenings from 7.30pm to 9.30pm.

Ben said: 'We are slowly building up the number of young people coming along to the youth hut on these nights.

'It has been really rewarding so far to see some of the youngsters coming along and seeing them relax and socialise in a safe environment.'

For more information about Downham Youth Project or the young parent support group e-mail dypm@downhamyouthproject.co.uk.