The future is bright and it’s orange

The much anticipated opening of Orange Box. Below: Emma Cowan
The much anticipated opening of Orange Box. Below: Emma Cowan

Emma Cowan a pupil of Brooksbank School, kicks off a series of occasional columns aimed at letting young people know what’s happening in Halifax

After five years in the making it was finally time to kick-start the wonderful young people’s centre – OrangeBox. From a volunteer’s point of view things are a little different from a visitor’s - this is what it was like on the other side.

Emma Cowan

Emma Cowan

It was an early start for me; I was in the kitchen preparing icing, buns and decorations for the cupcake decorating competition. From picking up flowers, composing members of staff to giving speeches, I did a wide range of jobs throughout the day.

When the doors opened, people from all over flooded in; skaters to check out the funky rooftop skate park, musicians for the state-of-the-art recording studio, dancers, actors, bakers and people just coming to have a look.

OrangeBox catered for all with a fantastic performance from top beat-box champion Grace Savage, guitar and drumming workshops, cupcake decorating and dance workshops, it was a blast!

In the few spare moments I had, I tried the Indian dancing and the cupcake decorating. Even though I’m a terrible dancer and do not have a steady hand I really enjoyed it and was happy to see others feel the same way. Another thing I was involved in was the stand-up comedy. Even though it was something completely new to me, I had so much fun! I forgot my words and embarrassed myself; but that was part of the fun of it. Despite all this, I still got some laughs and made some people giggle. I particularly enjoyed how feedback was given. Now, feedback forms are quite boring, just filling in a slip of paper... However, this was a unique and fun way of telling us what you think. Usually writing on windows and glass is classed as ‘vandalism’, that was not the case! Visitors were given a special pen and told to write and illustrate their personal thoughts on the windows, doors or anywhere glass was. Surprisingly, there was no bad language or obscene sketches of human anatomy, but a diverse range of comments, memos and thoughts.

When everyone had left and the day drew to a close, I took the time to draw caricatures of all the team and helpers. It was quite an amusing sight! For my abiding memory of the day, I do not remember it for being stressful and overbearing, but for being a chaotic masterpiece.

Even with things being pretty hectic it some how tied together beautifully. Things panned out how they were supposed to and I would not have changed a thing. My favourite thing about the day was the atmosphere. I loved how everyone pulled together to see the event through, even after a hard day’s work, stress, lots of preparation and long hours the day went well.

The OrangeBox has a very bright future.