A surfin' New Year for groups

TWO new youth centres will surf into the New Year after they were given more than £5,000 by a national charity for internet computer equipment.The Salvation Army and Bramford Road Methodist Church in Ipswich were both gifted the cash by Lloyds TSB Foundation, which has handed over more than £325,000 to East Anglian charities this year.

TWO new youth centres will surf into the New Year after they were given more than £5,000 by a national charity for internet computer equipment.

The Salvation Army and Bramford Road Methodist Church in Ipswich were both gifted the cash by Lloyds TSB Foundation, which has handed over more than £325,000 to East Anglian charities this year.

The larger of the two donations went to the Salvation Army youth centre on Woodbridge Road and has been used to set up a cyber café for the area.

Major Michael Stannett, who runs the centre, is hoping that the internet will help give local children an incentive to stay off the streets.


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"There's a bit of a problem in the area; we want to give them something to do. We've got four computers now, which we hope both kids and adults will use."

The Salvation Army already runs a centre for children aged seven to 12, and will be introducing a second centre for 12 to 16 year-olds alongside the cyber café.

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Bramford Methodist Church, which is currently trying to raise the final part of a £500,000 effort to build a fully equipped learning resource centre, was also delighted by their own windfall of £2,500.

Tom Young, who runs the appeal, hopes to put the money towards desks, bookcases and general equipment for the project.

"This will help provide essential facilities for all ages but particularly the children in the area."

The new centre will include homework clubs and internet access, and it's thought that 700 children will benefit each month once the building opens.

The church is aiming to sign contracts in the New Year to get the ball rolling, and currently requires £40,000 more to reach their target.

Sue Denning, a spokeswoman for the Lloyd's TSB Foundation, feels that access to a wider world through media such as the internet is an important part of children's education.

"It makes a real difference to the lives of local people as donations to the Salvation Army and Methodist Church helps to improve learning opportunities for disabled and disadvantaged people of all ages."

A further £24,000 was donated to various other projects around Suffolk.

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