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"It was great showing the Lloyds Banking Group colleagues more about our work with children and young people here at Media Academy Cardiff. Their fundraising efforts mean that BBC Children in Need can help support projects like ours, so we cannot thank them enough."
Nick Corrigan, Director, Media Academy Cardiff.

 

 

Graham Young, from Team Cardiff, visits Media Academy Cardiff who provide education projects for young offenders. 

This evening myself and five of my fellow Cardiff Team cyclists attended an awards ceremony for Media Academy Cardiff (MAC) at the Wales Millennium Centre. MAC is one of many projects who receive funding from BBC Children In Need in Wales; currently they fund 150 projects to the value of £8.5m. This investment changed the lives of 23,000 disadvantaged children and young people living in Wales in 2015. Wow!!

MAC is one of the bigger funded projects in Wales and they have been singularly responsible for a transformational reduction in youth crime in Cardiff and its surrounding area. They focus on first time young offenders and have a facility in the central Police station where they can assess and take on cases at source. These young people are encouraged into various projects across a range of arts including, music, photography, acting and dance to name a few, where they can channel their energies in productive and positive activities which repurposes their lives. In doing so they acquire formal qualifications and many go onto higher formal education including degree courses. It is nothing short of inspirational.

Tonight myself and the team witnessed performances from a range of young people who had the courage to perform in front of an audience with music, acting and singing. Simply MAC changes young people’s lives. To achieve this they need a special human being who wants to make a difference in their community and has the skills and organisational nouse to do it. In this case step forward Nick Corrigan. They also need caring staff to support the young people… and they need money.. which is where we come in.

This made BBC Children in Need feel real for me. Witnessing where our money really makes a difference and looking into the eyes of young people who now have a new purpose and being consumed by their smiling faces. Fund raising can become a bit of a process, good team building, a bit competitive and fun of course but the reality is we can be disconnected from what it is really about. Attending this evening made that connection for me. I felt humble and inspired. I had to shake Nick's hand, he is an awesome individual. There are some things I am now thinking about outside of the fund raising following this visit. It made a difference for me!