Creating communities: a space for young people

Young man holding a piece of paper and talking into a microphone, sat opposite a young person at a desk in a studio

When developers build in Islington, the council charges them money to pay for projects that matter to people in the local community. In 2021, Prospex received money to set up a new tech hub at their youth centre in Piper Close. We find out more

Prospex is a youth work charity that aims to increase and improve the opportunities and experiences of at-risk young people in Islington. With the money they received from the council, they were able to “fully kit out a studio with iMacs, iPads, podcasting equipment, cameras, microphones, music and editing software, MIDI keyboards, DJ decks and mixers, and all the necessary interfaces,” says CEO Richard ‘Beef’ Frankland. “We were also able to line the walls with acoustic tiles. It looks and sounds amazing.”

Young people can come to Prospex to learn how to create music, podcasts, film and photography, animation, and digital art. Since the tech hub opened, it has been in constant use and, so far, they have had 105 individual young people using the space. “There has been some incredible music produced and we are looking to release an album later in the year,” Beef continues. “Having access to good quality tech equipment is really important. It encourages creativity and expression, builds self-confidence, creates opportunities for collaboration, is an outlet for stress and mental health, and helps with career exploration.”

Beef sees podcasting, one of the centre’s popular activities, as a great way for young people to have their voices heard. “Young people often feel they are not given the chance to have their say on important issues, so this gives them a platform to do that,” he explains. One group of girls recently completed a series on women in work, interviewing women who run their own businesses. “It proved inspiring for all who took part,” Beef continues. “It’s well worth a listen.”

Prospex also received more funding recently to refurbish the kitchen at the youth centre. “We are very excited about this. At all our sessions, we provide a free, hot, and nutritious meal for the young people who attend,” Beef explains. “The kitchen upgrade will help us to do this more efficiently and with less waste.”

The space is also used to teach young people how to cook and budget for meals, “so it is exceptionally well used,” he says. The refurbishment will include a commercial fridge and freezer, a stainless-steel central island, three commercial induction hobs and one that is for a large wok. “It will benefit every young person who accesses our centre.”

Find out more about Prospex

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