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25/6/2012 - Theatre event to launch `Celebrating Youth`

Young people from across Cumbria will be showcasing their skills and talents at the launch of an exciting new three-year youth initiative.

On Tuesday 3 July, Keswick's Theatre by the Lake is playing host to the official launch of Celebrating Youth.

Celebrating Youth is a county-wide initiative aimed at promoting all activities for children and young people, recognising the contribution they make to Cumbria's communities and demonstrating how the vast range of activities available can encourage young people to broaden their horizons, raise ambition and aspiration and tackle problems such as youth unemployment.

At the theatre, the audience will be treated to a variety of performances and presentations ranging from a five-minute version of Shakespeare's Macbeth to a display of photos taken by young Cumbrians as part of an international photography project.

A host of organisations are going to be represented at the event - both in the audience and on stage - with young people from across Cumbria playing a starring role in the proceedings.

Led by Cumbria County Council and involving a range of other partners including Young Cumbria, Inspira (formerly Connexions) and Cumbria Police, Celebrating Youth highlights what's on offer for young people and will help get them involved in new interests, boost their self-confidence and raise their ambitions and aspirations.

The launch is aimed at giving the invited audience of schools, young people, youth organisations and the media a taste of what Celebrating Youth is all about and how they can get involved.

Performances and presentations will include dancing from Dalton-in-Furness' Dowdales School pupils who've been working with a professional dance company and the story of Cumbria's very own Olympics - the School Games.

Celebrating Youth is being launched in 2012 to coincide with the opportunities for young people presented by the 2012 Olympic Games with a focus on the themes of celebration, aspiration and ambition.

To publicise the initiative and give it visibility around the county a new Celebrating Youth logo and brand has been created with the help of two teenage designers and the county's youth councils in all six districts.

The logo is going to be used on a range of publicity materials including posters, letter heads and websites to promote the wide array of youth activities available around the county and is available to be used by organisations signed up to the Celebrating Youth concept.

Councillor Eddie Martin, leader of Cumbria County Council, said: "Celebrating Youth is a wonderful initiative that will give our young people some of the credit and recognition they deserve.

"Cumbria is a fantastic place to grow up and right across the county from Silloth to Sedbergh, Waberthwaite to Warwick Bridge and everywhere inbetween, there are a wide variety of activities and opportunities available for young people whatever their interests, hobbies or passions might be.

"The key to the future of a successful and vibrant Cumbria is for us to nurture, encourage and support our young people as well as celebrating their successes, and Celebrating Youth will help meet all these aims.

"I'm very much looking forward to the launch event that will give a snapshot of existing activities out there as well as outlining what Celebrating Youth is about and what we hope it can achieve."

Councillor Oliver Pearson, Cumbria County Council's Cabinet member for stronger communities, said: "2012 is a really exciting time for young people up and down the country with all sorts of Olympic themed events taking place and while Cumbria might be more than 200 miles away from the Olympic stadium, the county is really getting into the Olympic spirit with Celebrating Youth.

"Having a range of partners from communities across Cumbria joining forces to celebrate our young people is an excellent initiative and we aim to take this momentum forward over the coming years to ensure a lasting legacy of ambition, aspiration and opportunity in Cumbria."

Media enquiries to communications adviser John Ballard on 01228 221752