Mersey Maritime to raise £20,000 for the Hive

Industry cluster organisation Mersey Maritime pledges to raise £20,000 to support the The Hive Youth Zone in Birkenhead. Tony McDonough reports

Mersey Maritime will help raise £20,000 for The Hive Youth Zone in Birkenhead


Mersey Maritime will help raise £20,000 for The Hive Youth Zone in Birkenhead as part of its commitment to revitalise coastal communities..

At its eighth annual Mersey Maritime Industry Awards (MMIAs), taking place at Liverpool Cathedral on Thursday, November 10, chief executive Chris Shirling-Rooke will announce The Hive as its chosen charity for the year.

As it marks its 20th anniversary, Mersey Maritime is choosing to support The Hive as part of its commitment to help revive and grow our coastal communities, which are at the heart of the UK’s £116bn maritime sector.

In Liverpool city region alone, maritime is worth £5bn a year in GVA and supports tens of thousands of jobs. Yet coastal communities remain among the most disadvantaged in the UK.

Just a short distance from Mersey Maritime’s headquarters in Birkenhead, The Hive Youth Zone offers a purpose-built centre for young people. It is, as the name suggests, a hive of activity and a safe haven for some of regions most vulnerable youngsters.

Addressing an audience of hundreds of people at the awards ceremony on Thursday evening, Chris Shirling-Rooke will explain why he feels it is important to reach out to the most vulnerable people in our region.

“With the support of our incredible maritime family, in this our 20th anniversary year, our aim is to collectively raise more than £20,000 to support the most vulnerable young people in our coastal community,” he says.

“I’m a proud Birkenhead boy, who’s been incredibly fortunate to work in the best industry in the world. I know only too well however that our Coastal communities have some of the most deprived areas in the UK, with high unemployment and poverty, and incredibly low social mobility.

“The Hive Youth Zone in Birkenhead is a state-of-the-art purpose-built centre for young people within our area, where one in three children live in poverty.

“The Hive exists to help young people feel happy, healthy and to thrive within their community. Always putting young people first, they combine high quality youth work with inspiring activities in an inclusive, safe space.

“It provides the opportunities, knowledge and confidence to make positive choices, raising aspirations for individuals and their communities.”

Chris adds that the cost-of-living crisis is impacting families disproportionately. The work of organisations such as the Hive, he says, has never been more important.

“By donating £100 you could give a young person a year to remember by covering their membership, food and entry to The Hive,” he says. “Donate £1,000 and you could fund one week’s worth of hot food for the young people at The Hive. This might be the only hot meal they get that week.”


Mersey Maritime
Mersey Maritime chief executive Chris Shirling-Rooke. Picture by Tony McDonough


Catherine Sandow of The Hive added “We are so grateful to Mersey Maritime for this support. It will ensure we can continue to be there for the thousands of young people who need us.

“The latest statistics show that just under 4m children are living in poverty across the UK, and now with the cost-of-living crisis we are starting to see the devastating effect this is having on local families.

“We are here to help young people whatever their circumstances, enabling them to simply have fun, feel included and raise their aspirations about what they can achieve in a safe environment. We are needed more than ever, but cannot exist without the support of businesses with community at the heart of their values.”

This year’s MMIAs will be the biggest to date. There are 39 finalists and the winners have been chosen by the sector itself via an industry voting platform.

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