OVER 200 young runners from six local schools in Derry and Strabane were part of a kaleidoscope of colour this week as they completed the Respect Colour Run in St Columb’s Park.
The Youth 19 initiative, funded by the EU Peace IV Programme managed by the Special EU Programmes Body, was a cross community event to celebrate the young participants coming together, working hard and commiting to a training program.
Mayor of Derry City and Strabane District Council, Councillor John Boyle, officially started the race at the Foyle Arena and he congratulated all those who took part.
“What a fantastic sight it was to see hundreds of young people from different backgrounds and from all over the Council area running together and enjoying this colourful spectacle in St Columb’s Park,” he said.
“Congratulations to all those who took part, many of whom were completing their first 5k run.
“I know the participants were involved in a six week fast track training programme for this event and thank you to the coaches from the DCSDC Sports Development team and Peace Bytes team who helped them prepare.
“Some of the young people involved may choose to continue their fitness and running journey by completing a 10k event or even the Waterside Half Marathon in September but I hope all of them gained from the experience of this event.”
The six local schools who took part in the event were Oakgrove Integrated College, St Marys College, Foyle College, Holy Cross College, Strabane Academy and Castlederg HS.
Youth 19 is a year long programme of events and activities in the Derry City and Strabane District Council area focussed and dedicated to young people aged 12 – 24.
The ‘Youth 19’ programme is being developed using the information gathered from a record breaking engagement with over 10,000 young people in 2016 as part of the Council area’s bid to become European Youth Capital.
An exciting year long programme of projects, festivals and events has been planned which will offer opportunities for young people to get creative, learn new skills, get active, have their voices heard and make decisions about how funding is allocated.
There are plenty of opportunities throughout 2019 to allow young people to continue to help shape new projects and tailor existing programmes.
The programme website is accessible at www.youth19.com while you can keep up to date with news by following the Youth 19 social media channels on Instagram, Youtube, Snapchat, Facebook, and Twitter.