The Williams Lake Boys and Girls are hoping to make Boitanio Park a safer place for youth and families.
Executive Director Matt Neufeld, says they’re proposing to set up a mobile youth centre/pop-up park.
He says when he worked at Maple Ridge that was part of their summer job-to be at a skateboard/City park as a youth worker.
“There’s been tons of case studies all through North America and in one study of a pop-up park in Minnesota and a crime high gang area. They would go and do pop-up parks in abandoned lots in these areas and it was really well received. The crime stats did deteriorate.”
The program would run five days a week in June until the end of August from 3pm-8pm, with staff carrying a cell phone in the case of any emergencies and target youth aged 13-18.
“I think sometimes when there’s nothing going on that sometimes boredom and all the stuff leads to minor crime and nuisance. So if there’s something there it kind of address that issue oh there’s nothing to do,”says Neufeld.
“I realize that this is not going to solve the crime problem by any means, but it’s just a different method to engage some groups maybe we don’t see at the Boys and Girls Club.”
The proposed mobile youth centre and pop-up park is currently being reviewed by the City’s Finance Committee as they move forward to finalizing this year’s budget.