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Belfast City Airport Supports Inclusive Youth Development Showcase

Date: 09 Jun 2023

George Best Belfast City Airport has partnered with professional theatre company Kids in Control to deliver its youth creative learning programme ‘All Doors Open’.
The initiative, supported by the Airport’s Community Fund, aims to support young people of all abilities transition from school to independence by developing their team-working, self-expression, and communication skills. 
Throughout the 13-week programme, All Doors Open incorporated physical theatre storytelling, dynamic group work, and creative movement sessions, providing participants with opportunities to develop self-efficiency and resilience, allowing them to confidently participate in mainstream community life. 
Speaking on the success of the programme, Company Manager of Kids in Control, Grainne Woods, said:
“The All Doors Open initiative was established in response to feedback we received from young people and their families which highlighted the gap in services for differently abled youth locally transitioning to adulthood.
“Many of these young people leave education and find themselves in a sort of limbo, All Doors Open was created to change this by creating a place and purpose for our participants and helping them to develop the skills that will allow them to fully take part in the life of their communities.
“The support we have received from Belfast City Airport has been invaluable, in fact it very much saved a fledgling programme, so we are thrilled to have been able to deliver the initiative this year and to be making a real difference with the Airport’s help.”
Founded in 1997, Kids in Control provides bespoke learner-led programmes focused on long-term benefits, delivering programmes for young people of all abilities and backgrounds in diverse community settings.
The All Doors Open 2023 project culminated with a performance titled ‘Action Potential’ at Belfast’s iconic Lyric Theatre and celebrated the abilities and achievements of all participants, with friends, family, and representatives from the Airport in attendance.
Rory Goldring of George Best Belfast City Airport commented:
“At Belfast City Airport we are dedicated to playing our part in the continued development of our community, investing in people, and inspiring the next generation.

“We understand how important initiatives such as All Doors Open are, in the development of young people of all abilities and we are delighted to have been able to support Kids in Control in the delivery of this programme through our Community Fund.

“To see the work that’s gone into the workshops over the past number of months and these young people then shine on stage as a result of our support was truly fantastic and we can’t wait to see where it takes them next.”

Belfast City Airport’s Community Fund was established in February 2009 and in the years since then, has donated nearly £500,000 back into more than 200 projects across Greater Belfast.

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