Wednesday September 1, 2021
Young people from different backgrounds who have felt the impact of Covid-19 came together for a community event promoting physical and mental health.
Bristol Somali Youth Voice (BSYV), which works with disadvantaged young people, organised the day of sport at Lockleaze Sports Centre.
Chairman Mohamed A Sayaqle said the group wanted to bring people together to socialise positively post lockdown.
"They have been dealing with issues triggered by Covid-19," he added.
Mr Sayaqle said the football sessions allowed young people and members of the community to "get back to some kind of normality" following lockdown restrictions.
"A lot of young people are struggling and getting involved in street violence and anti-social behaviour because they lost their job," he said.
"These sessions aim to engage and educate young people and get them involved in sport. They can socialise and interact with other young people, be a role model to each other and showcase their skills and talents," he added.
BSYV aims to empower disadvantaged young people in Bristol and is based at Easton Community Centre.
Mr Sayaqle said the pandemic had caused a burden and hardship to the community.
"A lot of the community members are struggling with unemployment or losing a family member of friend.
"It is vital to have a space to talk about our mental and social wellbeing and how Covid has affected us and to do something to boost our wellbeing," he said.
Neighbourhood policing teams and Lord Mayor of Bristol Steve Smith also attended the event on Sunday.
Speaking to those who attended, Mr Smith said: "Although we are from different roots and backgrounds, we are all Bristolians, and events like this make our city and community better."