The Shine Project Our Community Hero in the Spotlight for March is The Shine Project – a local charity that commits to see every young girl aged 11-14 develop and maintain good physical and mental health. The Shine Project was founded 13 years ago, and it has positively impacted over 2000 young lives since then. It strives to create a solid foundation on which every teenage girl can create a bright future. The charity successfully delivers an eight-week course designed to equip every girl to become the best version of herself, both inside and out. Shine works in partnership with schools, youth groups and charities to provide young people with the opportunity to explore their concerns in a safe, friendly environment. The students engage through discussion and exercise subjects like self-acceptance, fitness, positive thinking, healthy relationships, skills and talents identification, and management of social media. The charity adapted quickly to the COVID-19 changes and transformed their traditional face-to-face course into The Shine Online Course, which is presented via Zoom. The Shine Online Course sends care packages each week to provide the girls with the activities to take part in the online workshops. According to research conducted by the Department of Education, more than one in three teen girls suffer from anxiety or depression. “We are trying our best to help young people navigate their feelings of isolation and anxiety”, explains Liz Davies, The Shine Operations Manager. A Shine student said about her experience: “Shine has helped me a lot with the way I feel about myself. It has made a difference to the way I see myself. I found it helpful how much I could relate to other girls in the group”. Parents have praise for The Shine Project too: “Thank you for running Shine – it’s the only thing my daughter looks forward to each week” - a parent’s text to the Shine team. CAN is really excited to announce that The Shine team has recently started to develop a similar programme for teenage boys. Keep your eyes peeled for more news from Shine on their website. A Shine participant sums up exactly what is has meant to her: “Shine was amazing and made me a lot happier than I was. I would love to do it again.” You can listen here to our Partnerships Manager, Emma and Anne, from the Shine Project talking to Blair Crawford on Hope FM about our Community Hero in the Spotlight initiative and the amazing work The Shine Project is doing.