An awards ceremony marking another successful year for the Go for Gold project, an initiative that sees young people aged between 11 and 18 allocate funding for and run their own youth projects, has been held at the Intermission Theatre in London.

Attended by a number of dignitaries including the Bishop of Stepney, Adrian Newman, this year’s event celebrated 11 youth projects from across the Diocese of London and offered a further prize for the best project diary.

In Go for Gold, youth groups are invited to apply for grants of up to £500 and a panel of young people, known as The Youth Advisory Panel, award the grants. Projects celebrated this year included:

  • An intergenerational project called "The Look" at St John’s, Hackney, which aimed to promote a better understanding of how young people are perceived in Church settings. The project involved a video about young and older people’s views of the Church and an intergenerational fun day
  • An interfaith project in Shadwell, Girls Unite, which brought young Muslim and Christian women together for a range of activities, including a graffiti workshop and a "Go Ape" tree top adventure
  • A youth group from St Anne’s in Tottenham, who received a grant to buy camping equipment and were currently planning their first camping trip due to take place this summer

The winners of the diary competition were the Junction Project from St. Johns Upper Holloway, who used the money to set up a monthly youth group which will be run by young people. A close second were St Mary’s Upper Street who used the money to fund a residential to Carroty Wood.

Bishop of Stepney, Adrian Newman, commented:

"It’s a great pleasure to celebrate these wonderful achievements of youngsters who are growing up in challenged and challenging environments.

"These projects point to story in which young people stretch themselves to live with qualities of faith, hope and love. This may not hit the headlines but it’s a story that deserves to be told.

Participation Worker (Youth) at the Development Project of the Diocese of London and event coordinator, Louise Paine Davey, said:

"The Go for Gold awards show what young people can achieve when they are given a chance to take responsibility and decide how funding is spent.

The Go for Gold project has been running since 2007 and grants are distributed through the Youth Development Project of the Diocese of London; a partnership between the Diocese of London and The Children’s Society.

It help young people develop life skills like decision making, money management and team work and the ceremony is always run by young people from the Youth Advisory Panel.