Investing in early support for young people
Mayfield and Easthouses Youth 2000 Project (Y2K) is a place situated in the centre of Mayfield where young people can come, as often or as little as they want, to activities that are organised around their needs.
The University of Edinburgh recently awarded Y2K a grant as part of the Edinburgh Local Community Grants Scheme, set up in 2017 to support community projects.
The aim of the Involve U/180 pilot project was to develop and deliver a programme of issue-based workshops and diversionary activities for young people aged from 11 to 18 years. The hope was that these activities would help reduce youth offending, anti-social and risk-taking behaviours.
The centre was set up in 2000 when the local community recognised there was nowhere for young people to socialise outside of school hours. Nearly 18 years later, this dedicated youth centre aims to be responsive to the needs of the young people in the community.
It’s youth-led, so the ideas for activities are always sparked by the service users, and this has been vital to the success of the centre; allowing young people to be the ones to say what they need.
The youth workers listen to us and actually care about what we say and do.
The project management team at Y2K understand the importance of investment in early support for young people, particularly for those living in deprived communities.
I took part in really good workshops about things like alcohol awareness. The session about victim empathy really made me think about how my behaviour is affecting others and I don’t want to do that to people I love.
As part of the 180/Involve U project, Y2K staff worked closely with community police and other partners to deliver a series of activities and workshops. Early supports were delivered that allowed young people to learn more about a wide range of issues including online safety, sexual health and crime prevention, and the 180-pilot en
couraged young people to build positive relationships with the police.
Young people were able to participate in positive diversionary risk-taking activities and trips. These new experiences and days out resulted in trusting relationships being formed between staff and young people.
The summer programme has kept me busy and entertained, keeping me out of bother. Normally I would just be bored and so hang about the streets, setting fires and stuff. This summer I haven’t been lifted once and I have done stuff like outdoor combat and canoeing. It was quality.
Being part of the 180 project has made me think a bit more about where my future is heading and I think I need to make some changes now.
The project has had huge support from the community and Y2K is now working in collaboration with the three high schools in the area to combat anti-social behaviour and raise aspirations of young people.
I am going back to school next week and I have realised I need to screw the head on and work hard. I’m not wanting to be getting chased from the police any more. I need to think about the future now.
Find out more
Demand for the services of Y2K continues to grow, and the staff are always looking for support to ensure the sustainability of this vital service.
Please let firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like to get involved or know more about the project.