Young citizens prepare to decorate children’s ward

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A group of teenagers are working towards redecorating a Bedford Hospital ward as part of their National Citizen Service.

The Bedford-based group are embarking on a fund-raising initiative to pay for the equipment needed to cheer up Riverbank Ward and make it more appealing to its young patients.

Group member Paige Deacon said the Riverbank Renovation Project was devised on a residential course run as part of the NCS scheme, which is a national programme aimed at engaging 15-to-17 year olds.

She said: “The 16 of us spent five days working on the project, which the hospital is happy for us to do.

“It is part of the National Citizen Service course, which is run for young people who aim to make a difference in their community.

“Helping out the hospital is the most important thing to us in this project. However we also want to inspire other young people and reduce the stigma around teenagers.”

The group is aiming to raise £750 to carry out the renovation, with any extra being used to buy toys or donate to the ward.

They will be holding a collection and selling raffle tickets outside Morrisons, in Bedford, on Saturday, and Asda, in Biggleswade, on Sunday.

Miss Deacon hopes they will be able to redecorate the ward at the end of August.

The group graduates from the scheme on September 17.

For more information, or to make a donation to the group, go to