The basic concept underpinning the project is to provide a community-driven flexible building to encourage young people in the age range 10 to 25
years old to drop in on an informal basis, but also partake in structured activities as appropriate. The building will comprise space for a lounge, a
main multipurpose space as well as meeting rooms, catering facilities and toilets.
Young People surveyed are looking for a facility to enjoy both unstructured and structured activities. The former would include a social place to
‘hang out’; with refreshments, pool and table tennis tables; internet access and gaming. The latter would include themed events, discos, film nights,
barbeques and suchlike.
The Weald School see the advantage of providing additional premises to put on courses, which would benefit from a non-classroom environment
and augment the school curriculum with additional non curricula activities.
From reviewing experiences at other similar facilities there is also potential to provide: health advice and information and a variety of drop-in
sessions by youth support professionals.
The building will have an open plan layout to encourage as wide a range of activities as is possible given the space available. However it is
recognised that a small meeting room and office space is necessary to maintain privacy and confidentiality for those occasions when it is needed.
Kitchen facilities for culinary workshops and catering are also open plan, giving the space a feeling of being more ‘club-like’.
Adequate storage will be built-in to accommodate the wide range of users of the building.
The EYE building will have the following specific community use:
- EYE will be a community-led and community-governed building to encourage young people and those involved with young people to engage
with their community in positive ways
- It will provide them with a wide range of outreach support and advice that is generally only available to people living in more urban areas (like
Horsham town centre)
- As an ‘alternative learning’ hub, young people with emotional or behaviour problems will be given opportunities and encouragement not
available to them through main-stream education
- It will be used as an informal drop-in place to meet with friends on an informal basis
- It is envisaged that access to youth workers and other support workers will be greatly improved. This will increase the well-being of (young)
people by knowing there is ‘somewhere to go and someone to speak to’ when they have problems and concerns.