On the 11th November people all over the world marked the 100 years since peace was declared following World War 1.
At our youth clubs in Teesdale, the youth workers wanted to ensure that the young people we work with had a solid understanding of why we have remembrance day, the importance of the poppy and the role YMCA played in those efforts. We wanted to ensure the young people that we work with understood what they were part of.
Our young people created a display window in Barnard Castle out of handmade poppies and print-outs. In Cockfield and Evenwood they made wreaths made out of their hands that looked like hand poppies.
While they were getting crafty and making these symbolic displays, they learnt about what YMCA heroes and heroines did during WW1, they learnt about the history of the poppy and how it was all started by a YMCA volunteer.
Our young people also learnt about how YMCA first appeared in Teesdale in order to serve the soldiers that were based in the 5 camps surrounding the town during World War 2. Why was this such an important piece of work for us? Those that were involved in the work started to feel more connected to the importance of Remembrance Sunday; it was no longer something that happened every year, it had become something they were connected too through YMCA.