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Shining lights; Celebration for youth mag team.

Byline: By EMMA DAVISON News Reporter

AN evening of celebration was held to recognise the talents of young contributors to an award-winning magazine.

The event, held at Dewsbury Town Hall, celebrated contributors to Shine magazine, a publication which includes creative writing, interviews and art work from youngsters aged eight to 18.

The publication was set up by Kirklees Youth Offending Team and Youth Inclusion Programme and its contributors include those who have committed serious offences as well as volunteers.

The magazine is the first of its kind and its founders aim to develop the use of art alongside the many other activities used to work with and educate young people.

Its poems and stories give an insight into the choices young people make and their thoughts on offending behaviour and its consequences. The magazine's artwork is so impressive that it has been entered in a national arts competition.

The evening of celebration was hosted by poet, writer and performer Craig Bradley, who was joined by young people who read out their poetry and writing.

This was followed by a presentation of certificates by CIr Jim Dodds, Cabinet member for children's services, to all the magazine's young contributors.

Lynne Graham, of the Kirklees Youth Offending Team, said: "It was an emotionally charged evening and fantastic to see so many young people and their families attend.

"We are all very proud of the contributions made by these young people and they were clearly proud at receiving their awards.

"Many of the young people we work with are extremely talented. Projects such as this give recognition to young people's skills and talents, improve literacy, empathy and self-confidence and encourage those involved to shine and work towards meeting their full potential."

Two thousand copies of Shine magazine have already been distributed to young people and adults throughout Kirklees to promote young people positively and demonstrate the great work they are capable of.

It is a pilot project and Kirklees Youth Offending Team and Youth Inclusion Programme hope to secure funding for the next two years with Mr Bradley, during which time a quarterly magazine will be produced.

Mr Bradley, together with Kirklees Youth Offending Team and Youth Inclusion Programme, recently won an award for outstanding partnership working in the arts and youth justice at an Arts Council event in Leeds.

The major event celebrated best practice in arts-led work with young offenders and those who are identified as at risk of offending.

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GOOD WORK: Event host Craig Bradley (left), contributor 15-year-old Ben Spence and CIr Jim Dodds at the presentation (S)
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Publication:Huddersfield Daily Examiner (Huddersfield, England)
Date:Jan 4, 2008
Words:429
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