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10.11.03
Young Parents Project commended for its work

WILD Young Parents ProjectWILD, a Cornwall-based project, has been presented with the prestigious Pamela Sheridan 'highly commended' certificate for its work with young parents. The event took place at the Sex Education Forum in London recently.

Gillian Ashenhurst (centre of photo) from the Falmouth WILD group, made a speech at the Sex Education Forum and collected the certificate on behalf of WILD. She was accompanied by Diane Maudling (right), who used to be a WILD young parent and has now moved on to become a Community Development Officer

The Pamela Sheridan award is presented annually by the Family Planning Association to projects that show good practice in sex and relationship education. WILD shared the runners up slot with the Victoria Clinic in London and the main award was won by the Christopher Winter School in East London.

Every year, WILD, which is supported by NOF funding through the Kerrier Healthy Living Centre, works with over 100 young parents who experience poverty, rural and social isolation and low self-esteem. By offering practical help in the form of free child care, groupwork and opportunities to learn new skills, the project encourages them to become volunteers and peer educators. WILD trains the young parents to give workshops in schools throughout Cornwall on the reality of young parenting and pregnancy. These workshops are based on the young parents' own experiences and are given in way that the school pupils can relate to. The workshops are funded by the Teenage Pregnancy Strategy and Sure Start.

The WILD project has received overwhelming positive feedback on the peer education work, with pupils confirming that they will "now wait to have children" and the young parents reporting increased confidence and higher aspirations. Most of the young parents build enough confidence to move on into higher education, employment or voluntary work. WILD's project manager is quick to point out that in some towns they work with young men as well as young women.

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Editor's notes:

Press contact for further information:

Ray Ashmore
Kerrier Healthy Living Centre Publicity Officer
Tel: 01209 614448
Email: ray.ashmore@kerrier.gov.uk

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Jason Clark
Communications Adviser
Objective One Partnership Office
Castle House
Pydar Street
Truro TR1 2UD
Tel: 01872 241379
Fax: 01872 241388
objectiveone@cornwall.gov.uk

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