Future of Alnwick’s youth a key issue for the community

Nurlina Shafrin
Nurlina Shafrin

The state and public sector play the largest role in the welfare of society in Alnwick, according to recent research.

As previously reported in the Gazette, postgraduate student Lina Shafrin used the town as the focus for her study, which looked at the concept of the Big Society, whether it existed and the advantages and disadvantages.

In January last year, the first part of her research showed that the Big Society concept has been alive and well in Alnwick for some time now, with a number of events involving volunteers and many groups set up due to concern for the community.

But she warned that it is dying out, primarily due to the recession, which has put pressure on funding, and the apathy of youngsters in the town.

The second part of the project, the report of which has now been completed, involved a survey of 72 people from across Alnwick.

The state/public sector was considered to be the community group that contributes most to the welfare of society, followed by charities and then youths in third.

Local politicians and local business were ranked at the bottom, which Lina said was rather revealing as these two community groups are supposedly the main drivers of the so-called Big Society.

In terms of social groups, the respondents’ feedback identified youth as the social group that contributes most to the welfare of society in Alnwick.

And keeping with the attention on young people, youth unemployment is identified as the most concerning issue in the area, followed by adult unemployment and the social integration of youngsters into the community.

As suggested by the first part of the research, the majority of respondents felt that the Big Society was a social concept that has been around for years.