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Youth Reps 9th + 16th January

To welcome in the New Year we invited a group of Social Care students from Bath Uni who are undertaking a Community Profiling project about motivations and barriers to volunteering. They posed a range of questions to our young people, including:

What’s your experience of the mentoring process?

The young people spoke with high regard about this and shared some of their own personal experiences.

Is masculinity a barrier to males volunteering as mentors?

Our young people suggested that males can feel “less of a man” and that their street cred can be impacted – this was mainly in terms of males allowing themselves to get vulnerable and leaving themselves exposed.

This was followed by a visit to see Dave Wiles at the Southside Youth Hub – with planning still well underway for our own project, we used this opportunity to gather some of Dave’s experience and ask him some pertinent questions.The key points raised were:

  • Different venues in Bath / Temporary lease of a shop
  • Set up an account for the Social Enterprise / Allow transparency, accountability.
  • Public liability insurance
  • Training – safeguarding, first aid, challenging behaviour
  • How to advertise
  • Begin fortnightly, build numbers and switch to a more regular weekly evening
  • Ages of staff / volunteers – concerns over boundaries with the young people who attend
  • Wifi and Xbox can be used as a positive tool to bring people together, rather than separate
  • Use a sexual health nurse / Sirona for outreach
  • Have an information point, but information is always best passed on from person to person.

Next week we welcome Bristol-based graphic design company Colour and Thing, who are generously helping the young people the identity and branding of the group and their manifesto for young people!