BIG-HEARTED youngsters from Craigneuk gave up their school holiday to sow the seeds of a project which will transform their area.
Around 20 pupils spent last week clearing rubbish and debris from the area behind the shops at Willow Drive, which is soon to be turned into allotments.
The hard-working group were supplied with bin bags, gloves and other equipment by local community wardens, and then managed to fill an entire skip with the fruits of their labours.
Now the area has been transformed and will soon become a series of mini-gardens tended by local residents and pupils at local schools, who will take over four plots to grow their own vegetables and help promote healthy living.
The teenagers became involved in the clear-up operation through the voluntary Sidekix project, which provides fun activities for local youngsters including football coaching and dance lessons.
Airdrie South councillor Michael Coyle, whose ward includes the Craigneuk area, was full of praise for their efforts.
He said: “There aren’t many school pupils who would give up their holidays and take time out to help their community, and they just deserve so much credit.
“These are really good kids and I can’t believe the change in them since they’ve been part of Sidekix. They’re working hard to achieve something for their area and the pensioners who live nearby have been coming out and giving them sweets and crisps while they work.
“Airdrie United have also had a big involvement in the programme by letting us use the facilities at New Broomfield, and in future we might use part of the ground for a healthy living project which we’re currently trying to get funding for.
“There’s been a big change in Craigneuk – these kids are doing a fantastic thing and people are starting to sit up and take notice, and it’s a great success story.”