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Sandwell Celebrates Youth Work Week

Published 11th November 2022

Councillor Simon Hackett, cabinet member for children and education with young people from Coneygre Arts Centre

Sandwell Council is celebrating Youth Work Week 2022 the theme of which is A Festival of Youth Work.

Sandwell Council’s Youth Service is celebrating the week with staff, young people and partners on social media, through our youth provision and at a number of meetings and events, taking the opportunity to highlight the fantastic work that is being done with young people across the borough.

During and since Covid restrictions have lifted, there has been an increase in the number of young people accessing the service’s provisions. Last year alone there were over 15,000 attendances.

On the surface, youth clubs and youth provision may be seen simply as places for young people to go but they provide so much more.  They are places, where young people get to mix with other young people, make new friendships, get to try new things and have new experiences, whilst being supported by trusted adults.

For example, ‘A’ and ‘B’ are young people with severe self-confidence issues and both suffer with mental health, anxiety and eating disorders. These young people through positive and trusted relationships built with youth workers over a period of time, created resources for the Safer Streets, Violence Against Women and Girls project. The resources were shared at an event attended by over 100 young women and a range of professionals at Sandwell College.

These young people would now like to act as peer mentors to gain experience of working with young people. One of them is even due to start a placement in the Youth Service as part of their health and social care course.

The journey of these young people shows how a positive intervention from youth workers can support young people to build their self-esteem and confidence, develop new interests, increase their personal and social development and become positive role models for others.

Councillor Simon Hackett, cabinet member for children and education said:

“We have a fantastic youth offer across Sandwell, embedded in the six towns, providing much needed services and provision for our young people.  Our youth workers are there for young people, providing warm and welcoming places for them to access whether that’s in a youth centre, youth club or on the youth buses. 

“They are able to respond to the needs of young people by providing them with new experiences, helping them to navigate the challenges of growing up with advice, guidance and support and are someone trusted they can talk to when life gets difficult.

“I’m pleased to be supporting and recognising the work our Youth Service does during this week but would highlight that this work goes on all year round. We should be proud as a Council that we have been able to maintain this much needed Service for our young people here in Sandwell’

For more information on the youth offer and to find out about youth provision in your area visit www.justyouth.org.uk or follow us on Facebook @JustYouthSandwell or on Twitter @SandwellYouth.