Happy returns to The Point

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AFTER school club The Point donned their onesies this week to celebrate the drop-in service’s first anniversary.

It was a birthday cake well earned as almost everyone suited up for the occasion – but special credit went to 13-year-old Dougie Whittington, who was crowned best dressed for his dinosaur onesie.

The Point – based at The Gateway, on Merrylee Road – opened last spring, offering a home from home for high school pupils from Cathcart and beyond.

The scout hall – a former bus depot – was renovated to provide internet access, computer games, a tuck shop and a chill-out room, thanks to a £9,500 grant from Glasgow city council’s Newlands and Auldburn area committee.

Run by the Cathcart Youth Ministry Project – a collaboration between Cathcart Trinity Church of Scotland, the Baptist Church and the United Free Church – The Point has been drawing southside youngsters in since.

For senior development worker Cara Wightman, the first year has flown by.

She told The Extra: “It’s all go and we’re delighted to have the place. One of the kids refers to it as home, and we have a dedicated bunch who come in every week. They just love having the space to be themselves.”

The focus for The Point in the coming year is to bring in more volunteers, as well as further financial support – currently provided through donations from the Friends of Radiate.

But it’s not all work, with primary age taster sessions on April 27 and June 15, as well as a fun day planned for June 8.

The youth club will also run activities during the summer, as part of the partnership’s established holiday club.

Cara added: “We want to see our numbers grow, but this is only our first year.

“We’re always thinking of ways to improve the service – maybe opening earlier according to when the schools let out – but we want to stay in Cathcart, because that’s what the Youth Ministry Partnership is about.

“Although it’s not built for purpose, we’re making the hall work and using the space as best we can – I’d just like to see even more kids making use of it in the future.”

To find out more about supporting the project through Friends of Radiate, contact dougie.paton@tiscali.co.uk. Anyone wishing to volunteer can contact cara@radiatecathcart.org.uk – or visit www.radiatecathcart.org.uk.