By 2022 when people talk about us, we want people to describe Zac’s as being:
- Innovative and independent – using its knowledge and experience to campaign for, and achieve, the best services to young people.
- A place that highlights the nature, identity and needs of young people.
- Somewhere that works in partnership with other providers, influences policy makers, and finds creative and cost-effective solutions to meeting needs.
- Accessible and outward looking, enabling the most vulnerable young people in Bolton to engage with professional and person-centred services, for achieving positive and sustainable life changing outcomes.
- A provider of fully integrated early interventionservices with a focus on outcomes (for young people) and evidence of excellence/effectiveness.
- A learning organisation.
For a full copy of our 2022 vision document please click here
As well as centre-based activities schools work emerged as another important strand of the charity, with support being offered to several schools across Bolton, in a variety of ways (e.g. lunchtime clubs, pupil mentoring support, and targeted issues-based work).
Zac’s (and The Sycamore Project) has always put the needs of the young people at the heart of all it does, and so its projects are always evolving, with new services being set up all the time in order to meet the increasing needs of its young people and the wider community.
In 2017, with mental health concerns emerging as a major issue for the young people in the community, a new “Young Persons Listening Service” and “Healthy Minds” peer support group was set up as part of a new “Thrive alliance” working in partnership with other Bolton based charities and with funding from Bolton CCG.
Whilst the charity has changed and evolved since being formed, the heart of serving the community and being faith based not biased has never and will never change.
The Sycamore Project was registered as a charity in 1995, founded by local church members, led by founder (and CEO until 2015) Stuart Barnes, wishing to show the love of God in action by serving their community.
In 1999 a former pub in Farnworth was acquired, refurbished and in 2000 opened as “Zac’s Youth Bar”, an alcohol-free venue for young people. This building is still used today as our main location for activities and our staff offices.
Over the 18 years since the launch of Zac’s the activities have expanded with a second centre opening in 2012 in Kearsley/Prestolee and with activities also taking place in other centres across Bolton, including Little Lever and Tonge Fold.