Daniella Smith in Bolton

CAP Report â€" Bolton Lads & Girls Club - Daniella Smith

Whilst at the lads and girls club I have been involved in a vast array of activities. In my own small group project the Funky Monkeyâ€â„¢s, we tried to participate in as many different activities as possible, making double choc chip cookies and Easter cards the highlights. For some of the girls in the Funky Monkey group, at first they were shy and found it hard to join in but by the end of the two weeks they all worked well in a team. I developed a good relationship with each girl and learnt to listen to each of their stories, be it real or fantasy!

Many of the days I worked at senior club until 10pm and control of the pool tables was very important. Although some young people would at first seem trouble makers, knocking the cues or hiding a ball most just wanted some attention and a conversation. The same people would come to the tables most days and so relationships were easy to build and allowing them to beat you in a few games always caused much teasing.

In the sports hall we had, amongst others: giant football, basketball and football rounders. All the games were fun and allowed the children to work in teams and get rid of some of the masses of endless energy they seem to have! Also in the hall is the rock climbing wall which I did not conquer myself but watched many children do so. I learnt how to put on the harnesses and all the right things to say when a child is scared and more than ready to come back down again.

All the staff are very friendly and almost immediately I felt part of the team. The club has such a lively atmosphere with happy and outgoing children as a result. Above all the club provides a chilled, positive place for children to hang out in and thatâ€â„¢s why I think they come back day after day.

I have learnt to be more confident and step out of my comfort zone whilst here at the club. I managed my own project and designed a merit book to keep track of each girlâ€â„¢s progress. I have built relationships with children, young people and staff. Overall, I have really enjoyed my time at the club and welcomed the chance to help out, going home feeling positive and having had a laugh as a result.

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