NY Horizons which operates from five main hubs across the county, providing early intervention, prevention, and recovery and mentoring services, celebrated the launch of the new computer room at its Harrogate hub in March.
Julia Mulligan, the Police and Crime Commissioner for North Yorkshire, was invited to officially open the suite and to unveil a plaque that highlighted her support, as well as a donation made by the friends and family of former service user, Jake Bryan, in his memory.
Julia, who was delighted to see the computers up and running, said: The first time I visited NY Horizons, I met service users first-hand who talked about the work that is done there and it made a really big impact on me, particularly trying to understand a little more about the problems that they have to overcome and how difficult it is to stay on track in the long term.
For me, that’s what was so important about the facility, that it’s an opportunity for people to get skills and qualifications that will help with long-term recovery and that’s why I wanted to support it so much.
The funding—which paid for four desktop PCs and an all-in-one printer, scanner and copier—will allow volunteers and mentors to facilitate online training and offer clients one-two-one support to access IT equipment, develop desirable skills and knowledge around technology.
Steve Flood, peer mentor and volunteer coordinator at NY Horizons, expressed his gratitude at Julia, The Bryan family, and local businesses for supporting the event. He said: To offer a facility like this gives our clients the chance to link into community resources, to access new skills, training courses and education, as well as opening an essential gateway to employment.
Julia’s support has been outstanding throughout the process and it’s her taking time out to see what we do that made this happen in the first place, so thank you to Julia and her team.
As a service, NY Horizons has been commissioned to support clients to not only address their substance or alcohol misuse, but to also start exploring the next steps they can take in other areas of their life.
A 59-year-old service user from Harrogate, who has been sober for seven months, puts her recovery down to the support provided by NY Horizons. She said: They were extremely patient with me, they helped me to stop drinking by providing the support that I needed. And now there is always someone I can ring when I feel vulnerable.
These computers will help a lot of people. It’s a homely environment for people like me who may not feel comfortable in a different setting. I am more likely to do an educational course now. I am looking into doing alcohol and drugs counselling because of the life experience I have, so I am sure the computers will help with that.
Launched in May 2013, Julia’s Community Fund is specifically for local organisations, groups or individuals who need money to help fund a new community safety project or scheme. So far Julia has awarded just under £1m to support more than 100 local projects, all of which are helping to make their communities safer.
Funds from £500 up to £20,000 can be awarded for specific projects that support communities within North Yorkshire to “Be Safe and Feel Safe”.
If you have a project that could benefit from Julia’s Community Fund, you can apply by visiting www.northyorkshire-pcc.gov.uk/CommunityFund