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Jags help Queens Cross break barriers with local Chinese community

Thistle striker joins local kids to help launch the next phase of housing association project.

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Partick Thistle is hoping to forge closer ties with the local Chinese community after funding for a local community project was secured for another year.

Thistle striker Kris Doolan joined local kids to help launch the next phase of Queens Cross Housing Association’s Sharing Lives Sharing Spaces project.

The club’s Charitable Trust is running a programme of football coaching as part of the project to increase physical activity in Glasgow, particularly among the local Chinese minority community in the Woodside area of the city.

The programme has been given the green light for another year after Queens Cross successfully bid for a £60,000 grant from the Scottish Government. 

As well as running sports coaching courses, Sharing Lives Sharing Spaces runs free classes to improve English, provide money and welfare rights services and children’s activities. 

These include support for young people and parents, with weekly homework clubs and cafes, a new community based film project involving young people and adults from across the community and regular ‘drop in’ help sessions offering advice across a range of issues. 

Jamie Ballantine, Queens Cross Social Regeneration Manager, said:

“This coming year, we will focus on ensuring a lasting legacy for the local Chinese community by engaging with services and integrating fully as valuable members of the local community in Woodside. This is one of the most deprived communities in the city, and the project will continue to organise activities and services that will help improve peoples’ life chances.”

One full-time project officer employed by Queens Cross will continue to manage the project. 

Queens Cross is confident the project will lead to better community networks and a closer, more integrated neighbourhood. 

“Specifically, we want to involve more people from the community in existing clubs and networks so as broad a range of people as possible have a say in what happens in their community.

“Encouraging more people to take up sport through this partnership with Partick Thistle will play a key part in this.”

Paul Kelly, Partick Thistle Football Club Charitable Trust Manager, said:

“The Club and Charitable Trust are always looking for ways to strengthen ties with the local community, and this is a perfect way to do just that with one of the largest minority groups in the area.

“Sport and fitness is something of a universal language and, no matter what your background, native language, religion or nationality, everyone can get involved and take something from it.

“The extension of the project funding is superb news for the whole community, and we are very much looking forward to being involved in the Sharing Lives Sharing Spaces initiative.” 

Pictured: Thistle striker Kris Doolan kicks of the latest football training session with kids from Queens Cross’s Chinese community.