This year the National Youth Agency has focused Youth Work Week around the theme of ‘Youth Services’ and why young people need great youth work and great youth services.
It got us thinking in Silx about youth work in Blyth and why having a facility like ours is so important and how we have helped so many young people with our quality youth work over the years.
Silx is the biggest youth provider in Blyth and we have been delivering high quality youth work in the town since 1996. We were originally set up to offer diversionary projects and activities for young people after an escalating number of young people had died from using Heroin in the local area and we have gone from strength to strength.
Over the last 21 years the staff at Silx have been committed to the young people of Blyth- encouraging them to reach their potential and have supported them whenever they have needed us.
Silx has offered lots to young people over the years including Arts Projects, Health Projects, Music Activities, Cooking, Life Skills as well as hundreds of trips and out of area residentials. As well as being open four nights a week we also run a very successful employability project. In these sessions our youth workers help young people to search for work, create a CV, apply for training, we also have a whole range of online courses that young people complete in house. As well as employability support our Youth Workers also offer advice and guidance on any issue that the young person feels could be preventing them from progressing whether this be debt, housing, benefits or health.
Silx is unique and is well known in Blyth for having an incredibly caring ethos and we understand how important youth work and youth services are, lots of our young people have commented that they wouldn’t have gotten where they were now without the quality youth work they received from us. Over the years we have helped hundreds of young people gain accreditations, we helped 61 young people get a job in the last year alone, over 40 young people attend our sessions every week, we work with hard to reach and marginalised young people as part of our detached project, we work closely with the police and local businesses to tackle youth disorder and week after week and year after year the young people come back and prove to us how important our service is.
The purpose of this blog post is not to ‘blow our own trumpet’ but to highlight just how important great youth work is and how it is needed, not just in Blyth but all over the country. Youth workers are a much needed figure in society to help encourage young people to realise their potential and increase their confidence. Youth workers can reach out to young people in a way that perhaps other professionals can’t- maybe because they don’t know the young person well enough or maybe they simply just don’t have the time.
Don’t just take our word for it, check out what our young people think of youth work and why it’s important to them……
To find out more about Youth Work Week, check out the National Youth Agency site here: http://www.nya.org.uk/supporting-youth-work/youth-work-week/