YOUTH AND COMMUNITY WORK
During the last year our youth groups have developed with exciting projects and structured work. We have continued to build relationships with young people and see them become more responsible to prepare them for adulthood.
One of our structured programmes was the virtual baby programme, which aims to educate girls about the demands and responsibilities of having a baby. The topics we included were:
– Choices and Safe relationships (the right to say ‘No’)
– Budgeting for a baby on a low income, and how much essential items cost
– Parental expectations, (as the group is culturally diverse)
– Girls get to take a virtual baby home overnight
Our boys group have been fortunate to attend a residential activity centre located in the Northamptonshire countryside called Rock UK. Some of the boys have never been away from home before, and originate from families where life is chaotic due to abuse or drug and alcohol abuse.
Since many of the participants are not originally from the UK, travelling outside of the West Midlands provides them with the opportunity to see and experience new places. The group participated in planned activities and enjoyed group ‘chill’ time. The staff loved the activities too !!
ONE TO ONE SUPPORT
Alongside the group work we also support families and young people on a one to one basis with a variety of family issues.
Much of the one to one work over the last year has been around sexual abuse and self- harm. Building relationships is central to our work, since this enables trust to develop.
We had 3 students on placement with us last year studying Youth and Community Work from Newman University in Birmingham. They have assisted in group work, school and home visits and anything else which comes their way. It’s not only another pair of hands, but with the right support and guidance we have been able to see them develop their skills in youth work.
ONE STUDENT WROTE:
“I entered Hope as a 1st year Youth and Community Degree student starting my first placement. I had experienced from my early years fractures and struggles through my personal life and the education system due to becoming a self-fulfilling prophecy. I have entered education again to claim back my education that I could have achieved previously, had I been given the opportunity to do so.
So I refer back to Hope and my placement, I entered Hope unsure and vulnerable by how I could ever be seen on a professional level. My first day felt like I was a small child again, frightened by the surroundings and how to relate socially to this new experience. Hope and all the staff held my hand, fed me, kept me warm and guided me without judgment or condemnation.
Hope is my strength, vision, grounding and my family and without Hope I would never have been given this wonderful chance to experience how humanity and humility combined can be a powerful beacon that shines through all the struggles and issues we all have to face. Hope is and always will be my home, no matter how far I travel away from it, and Hope are always with me as I travel through my journey.”
Looking back over the last year there have been many achievements, sad times and fun times and we are looking forward to what the next year brings. I really love my work and Hope has provided the space for me to work the way we do with young people.
Youth and Community Worker