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Youngsters 'escape' from the boredom of lockdown with Airplay



Youth support

Airplay members at RAF Halton have been enjoying a series of online escape rooms, bringing them together virtually. The sessions are just one way Airplay youth workers are working hard to keep youngsters engaged. In this guest blog, Julia Purton, RAF Halton station youth worker tells us more.

The young people from Halton Airplay have been using their puzzle solving skills to see if they can escape from a series of virtual escape rooms. The aim of these sessions was to get the young people to think about situations from a different point of view and also to give them an activity that they might not do in their day-to-day life.

The sessions started with some riddles to get their brains warmed up and thinking outside of the box before entering the escape room. Once we were all warmed up, the young people picked which themed escape room they would like to try.

We started off with a pirate-themed treasure hunt. The young people all worked together to solve each puzzle and move through the game to try and find the treasure. Although most of the young people knew each other from youth club we had some new members join and they all worked as a team even though they were all in their own houses.

Each week we did a different escape room, gradually working our way through the difficulty levels and each week the young people were solving the puzzles faster and faster and really getting the hang of thinking outside the box.

The sessions were really good because they brought the young people together again and as most of them weren't going to school they enjoyed an opportunity to see their friends and do something fun together. It was also good that we had some new members, who had just moved to Halton, join in as they felt included in Airplay already and are excited to come along to youth club when we are allowed to get back in the building.

One young person who enjoyed the experience, said: "I can't see my friends like normal because we can't go to school but the online sessions are the next best thing. The escape rooms were really good because we were talking to each other and having a laugh and it felt good when we escaped at the end. The online sessions have helped me in lockdown because I was feeling lonely but then I could see my friends."