Hull youth project bans energy drinks
A YOUTH project has banned young people from bringing energy drinks in a bid to improve health and behaviour.
Staff at St Mike's Youth Project claim some young people become disruptive after consuming energy drinks such as Red Bull.
Now, a sign has appeared on the front door of the project's building, off Orchard Park Road, informing youngsters such drinks will be confiscated and disposed of by staff.
Youth worker Donna Miller said: "The drinks are not healthy and rot children's teeth.
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"Of course, it's possible young people will just consume the drinks before coming in, so we are doing some education work too.
"We are telling the young people why we have imposed this ban. We have not had any negative feedback."
Youth worker Declan Barrow said: "Kids were bouncing off the walls after taking these drinks, so we have decided to ban them.
"The kids have responded well.
"They don't even try to bring the drinks in any more."
Reverend Anne Richards, the project's manager, said it is important young people are in the right frame of mind when joining in activities.
She said: "These drinks were affecting their ability to join in our activities.
"It was affecting their behaviour, which was not fair on our staff.
"It became apparent some local retailers were selling the drinks cheaply, which meant young people were buying more."
Reverend Richards said young people are free to bring in other drinks, including isotonic sports drinks. Staff will also provide healthy refreshments during sessions.
"We try to promote good health and this is one way we are doing that," she said.
"We regularly hold healthy cooking classes too.
"It is about educating young people and helping them lead healthy, fulfilling lives."
Reverend Richards said staff have not experienced any problems since the ban was introduced last month.
She said: "Young people like coming here.
"They respect our staff and we explain everything we do so they understand, which is important."
Many schools across East Yorkshire have taken a more hard-line stance and banned conventional fizzy drinks as well as energy drinks.