A YOUTH club in Tangmere blames West Sussex County Council for its lack of youth workers, after cuts to the service.
The club is struggling to stay open – because of a shortage of youth workers.
“What we have found really difficult is finding youth workers,” said Camilla Dica, 25, who is on the club’s committee.
“This is all down to West Sussex cutting youth club funding.
“It’s a consequence of the big cuts.
“If you close down youth clubs you’re going to lose youth workers. The people who used to be youth workers have moved on because they need to work.”
The youth service in West Sussex has been subject to a string of cuts in the last 12 months – most recently with £1.65m of funding slashed from the service in November.
Tangmere Youth club, which runs two sessions for nine to 12-year-olds, and 12 to 18-year-olds, has been a part of the community for 30 years, and has managed to keep its head above water.
But after endless advertising, for paid youth worker roles, the club is struggling to find anyone.
It currently has one trainee youth worker, but the club needs one youth worker for every ten children, and more than ten regularly turn up.
“There just isn’t the amount of youth workers there used to be,” said Mrs Dica.
She said the club has enough funding to keep going, from outside organisations, but it is finding qualified workers which is the issue.
The club, she said, is one of the reasons Tangmere has a low-crime rate, and is an important part of the community.
And founder John Rudkin, was recently awarded with a British Empire Medal.
“I would be so sad for him to see it close,” said Mrs Dica.
“We do not know if we’re going to be able to stay open.
“We don’t know how we are going to find people.
West Sussex County Council did not respond before the Observer went to press.
Anyone interested in becoming a youth worked at the Tangmere club should email Jsansby@hotmail.co.uk