TWO members of staff from Hillingdon Council’s library service have been recognised for their work in creating a dedicated space for young people at Botwell Green Library, Hayes.

Gemma McCaffery, area manager for the south of the borough, and Franka Aichour, the library’s branch manager, were presented with a Libraries Connected Award at a ceremony in Warwickshire.

The national awards celebrate the achievements of library workers who have had an exceptional impact on the service, its users or their local communities.

The pair were recognised in the Children’s Promise category, for improving services for young people.

After speaking to young people about what they would like to see, under-used office space at the library was transformed into an area for teens to relax, socialise and take part in activities.

It followed a successful bid for a £10,000 grant from the Greater London Authority. 

The room contains music and recording equipment, art and crafts, board games, virtual reality headsets and a PlayStation 5 console.

In April this year, there were more than 430 visits to the space, and sessions are also held specifically for girls.

Cllr Eddie Lavery, Cabinet Member for Residents’ Services, said: “This is an extremely important initiative, meeting the needs of young people in the area, using their feedback.”

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