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Accolade for Buffalo Centre Trustees

Accolade for Buffalo Centre Trustees

 © Michelle Mercer Photography – Dale Cartie receiving Trustee of the Year Award on behalf of Foster Burt

There was high praise for Foster Burt and Margaret ‘Penny’ Bennett at the North East Youth ‘Projects for Pride’ awards in early June after receiving honours for their voluntary service.

Foster Burt, who has been at the Buffalo Community Centre (aka Cowpen Quay Community Association) since it opened way back in 1974, received the ‘Trustee of the Year’ award along with the Platinum Award for 40 years voluntary service at the community centre.

Foster started at the original Buffalo Community Centre, which was based in the old St John’s Mission Church (in the Cowpen Quay).  St John’s Mission Church was in a really bad state of repair and in 1976 the centre moved to where it is today, on Regent Street.   Foster was based at the Buffalo Community Centre with the Probation Service with the lads on community helping out to ensure the building was kept in good repair, caretaking and cleaning of the building. 

After retiring from the probation service Foster remained devoted to the charity and became a trustee. To this day Foster remains totally committed to the Buffalo Community Centre.

Current manager of the centre, Eileen Cartie said “Foster has been a massive part of the centre right from the onset and has a variety of experience working with a wide range of people” and added “during my time at the Buffalo, Foster is the person I totally trust, have learnt a lot from, been a fab boss and a person many people aspire to be like.”

Margaret ‘Peggy’ Bennett, 91 also received the Platinum Award for 40 years service adding to her Red Cross volunteer award.  Peggy used to run a group at the centre but now takes a back seat from day-to-day activities, instead becoming a valuable member of the group of trustees.  

Eileen said of Peggy “She is a stalwart of the centre, remains a committed manager and continues to work hard for the centre and the local community”.

© Michelle Mercer Photography – Margaret ‘Penny’ Beckett (centre) receiving Platinum Award

Believe in Youth 2018

Believe in Youth 2018

We held an event for all services, charities and other organisations, that provide a service to young people to come together and show the public the fantastic opportunities there are on offer.

Silx teen bar came along and had their stall up showing the fantastic work they do with young people around the area from ages 11-25.  They help with employment, drugs and alcohol misuse.  They said “it was a fantastic event and well organised”.

Leading link and children’s university also attended.

Leading link provide a range of activities around the Northumberland area for children and young people including local schools.  These are the guys who organised the Alive in Blyth event earlier this year.

The children university, is a passport system that enables young people and children to get recognition of volunteering and being involved in local activities, they also get a certificate at an awards ceremony for their efforts.

Other notable guests included Children North East and Talent Match.

Children North East provide mentors for young people to help gain their confidence and self esteem. All mentors are between 17 and 21 and work with younger people, helping them to get more involved in local activities.

Talent Match north east help young people into employment through training and CV building and do their work throughout the NorthEeast.

NHS sexual health service came along with free condoms, leaflets, sexual health testing and freebies, they help young people by educating them on sexual health.

We had our own Buffalo Youth Projects there too.  Our youth projects provides four sessions per week for all ages and abilities within the local area. Including activities from healthy eating, sports, arts and crafts and so much more.

Although turnout was not as high as expected  the event was a huge success and a fantastic opportunity for networking with other agencies.  As a result some groups are now getting the sexual health service involved in their clubs, whist other people have exchanged contacts so they can work together in the future.

I am very pleased at positive feedback from the groups who came and the people who attended and also to Greggs who provided some sweet treats for the event.

Jo Thornhill

Senior Youth Leader