A YOUTH club in Stroud has benefited from a scheme introduced to help combat crime and antisocial behaviour.

The Door Youth Club is one of many beneficiaries of Gloucestershire Police and Crime Commissioner Martin Surl’s Commissioner's Fund, which aims to improve community safety as well as create new initiatives.

PCC Surl allocates 1% of the overall policing budget to the fund, to support county-based projects.

The £1 million fund was introduced to help charities to tackle everything from social exclusion and supporting young people, families and the elderly, to tackling drug and alcohol dependence as well as launching community projects.

Victoria Robson, director of service delivery at the Door Youth Club, said: "Both the funding and the relationship we have formed with the office of the police and crime commissioner have been instrumental in our being able to support young people and communities across the Stroud District.

"As a result we have been able to engage young people in constructive diversionary activities as well as support them on the streets to make good choices and respect the places where they live.

"Without OPCC support, our ability to provide this much needed youth work in the community would be unlikely to happen and we are hugely thankful for their continued support."

By the end of 2013, 45 organisations in Gloucestershire had been awarded grants aimed at reducing crime and anti-social behaviour.

As well as the Door, 42 other projects in Stroud are believed to have benefited from the grants, including Frith Youth Centre, Severn View Food Project, Friends for You, which is a befriending group helping elderly people in Minchinhampton, the Nelson Trust, as well as the the Stroud Valleys Projects.

PCC Surl said: “Community safety is not just about policing, it’s about everyone taking responsibility and playing their part in making their neighbourhood as good as they can be.

“Solutions are always best when they come from the people involved.

“Some have helped make our roads safer, some will help young people make the difficult transaction to responsible adulthood and others will make older people feel more secure.

“I firmly believe the best way to reduce crime and bring about more peace and good order is to involve our police, criminal justice services, community and voluntary sector."