Ahead of Children in Need this weekend, BBC presenter Barra Best met Fermanagh young people who benefit from ‘Positive Peers’ at the Devenish Partnership Forum in Enniskillen, one of the Northern Ireland based projects funded by the appeal.

The Devenish Partnership Forum provides a varied, year round programme for young people affected by multiple disadvantage, encouraging peer and homework support, life skills and opportunities to socialise with friends in a safe space. A three year grant funds the continuation of the Youth Co-ordinator’s salary and contribution towards trips and residentials.

Mark Burns is the Youth Co-ordinator at Devenish Partnership Forum and runs the ‘Positive Peers’ project which is aimed at 13 to 18 year olds and based at the main Devenish Partnership Centre in Kilmacormick, Enniskillen. Speaking to The Impartial Reporter, Mark said: “The project is funded by Children in Need so they came down to interview me and the children to hear about the programme. Barra came down last Thursday and interviewed us. The children thought it was great.”

Explaining the purpose of the project, Mark said: “We run different programmes to help the children become more independent. We have life skills programmes such as cooking and money management to help decision making. We run three or four nights a week with different activities and the children help choose activities, so they have an input in what we run as well. The children did a great graffiti project with an artist not that long ago which is now displayed on the outside of the building. We have lots going on, we have the educational workshops and we have the fun side of it as well.”

He continued: “We help develop interpersonal skills to help them communicate with others, to build friendships through social opportunities which help increase self-esteem and confidence. The youth club is a safe place for them to meet their friends.”

“We provide young people with opportunities that would not have been available to them due to social and economical deprivation without the funding of Children in Need,” he added.

Barra’s interview with Mark and the young people will be featured on Children in Need and aired on BBC One Northern Ireland, Sunday, November 17.

from 3.50pm.

BBC Children in Need currently funds 183 projects across Northern Ireland with funding of more than over £10million hard at work across the country.

Supporting the charity this year would help fund even more projects. Last year’s ‘on the night’ national total was £50.5m and in Northern Ireland it was £946,739.

For more information on how to get involved and to donate go to: www.bbc.co.uk/pudsey.