Going WIRE-less

24 January 2007 — 5 Comments

Today The WIRE (where I work) released a statement about its intent to close the project at Easter. It would take too long to explain how and why, but for more info on what The WIRE has been doing in Littlehampton for 10 years Click Here (pdf file. Get Adobe reader).

As from 31st March 2007, The WIRE will be closing its doors and shutting down all of our current activities.

Over the past ten years The WIRE has launched a huge number of activities and initiatives for children, young people and families in the local area. As a team we count it a real privilege to have been with you all on this journey to make a difference in this community. On that journey we have had much to celebrate, we have had some incredible times, with a lot of laughter and fun but also some tough times that we have shared together.

We have achieved much recognition for our creative work including the Queen’s Golden Jubilee Award and the British Urban Regeneration Association award for community regeneration. Through successful partnership working with schools, health and local government among
others, many of our aims are now being met within the community. So in 2007 it is time to reassess, focus and start to dream new dreams.

Although The WIRE as we know it will no longer exist, there are plans currently in preparation for something new that will continue in the spirit of The WIRE and develop more of a specialist service. We believe passionately in the community and are excited about the future.

We have known about these changes for a while and on the whole they are a positive thing reflecting the great developments that have happened in our community, yet I was still quite nervous about emailing this news to the contacts in my mailbox. For most of the afternoon I’ve been getting varied responses ranging from disbelief to support and solidarity. Here are a few:

it’s been clear to me that The WIRE has been doing a terrific work. It seems wrong and unfair that lack of funding should force such a good work to be unable to function

Wow what an end to an era. But as you say the start of a fresh beginning!

The team have been doing so much good work over there for so many years I think its crazy that no funding has been found to continue work that has been so successful. I am sure that the WIRE phase 2 will be just as successful and be strong for another 10 years!

you guys have prepared the ground and foundations for a really exciting future for that whole community

I was a little bit shocked about the message, because I am still very proud of [my time with] the Wire Project

Sounds like some very brave and bold decisions have been made to me. It’s always so tempting to perpetuate good things even when ending them could bring about something better.

Currently, I am very excited about the future. My employment is secure (although not defined). There are many opportunities within the local area for youthwork and community development so it will be interesting to see what sort of plant this new WIRE seed will grow into. With only two months until we close, there’s a lot of work to do in communicating these changes to the general public and answering their questions. That will probably be the most painful part as there are many, many families who will be impacted by our departure. Prayer would be appreciated!


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I am a qualified youth worker, writer and consultant based in Littlehampton, UK. I've worked in the voluntary youth sector for over 12 years, am married to Kirsty and we have two daughters named Hope and Eloise. Check out 'Journeying Together: Growing Youth Work and Youth Workers in Local Communities' and read my opening chapter.

5 responses to Going WIRE-less

  1. its good to read all the responses from people. be encouraged.

  2. its good to read all the responses from people. be encouraged.

Trackbacks and Pingbacks:

  1. Jon Jolly » Blog Archive » Problems with Press Releases - 1 February 2007

    […] the local paper ran a story about the closure of The WIRE. In all, it was a positive piece that focused on the good work we’ve achieved, […]

  2. Jon Jolly » Blog Archive » New Job - 11 March 2007

    […] most of the families and young people in some capacity and it’s been a difficult process to close The WIRE and stop the […]

  3. Paisley YMCA building for sale | Jon Jolly: My Life & Youth Work - 20 January 2009

    […] does remind me of when we closed The WIRE back in March 2007. Hopefully, like The WIRE, more creative and innovative work will grow out of […]

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