We planned on starting the year with a blog but keeping in fashion with current world events…it’s a little later than expected!
So here we are in a new year and a new month. Traditionally a good time to start something new – or to welcome new things into your life. (Positive thinking and wellbeing, anyone?)
At the end of last year, we welcomed two new people into the CY Team. Our fantastic Manager ,Clare, introduced us to her beautiful little bundle of joy, Isla!! At a very healthy weight, and the image of her Mama, we were delighted to meet the little cutie at our online Christmas gathering. If ever we needed a positive to come from being forced to have our ‘Christmas Night Out’ online, I don’t think we could have found anything better! We also welcomed Jen to the EWS team at the start of December. Jen will be running our NOLB Activity Agreement programme and as much as it wasn’t the best time for anyone to start a new role, Jen has hit the ground running and it feels as though she’s always been part of the team.
Speaking of welcoming – we like to think of ourselves as a friendly bunch with the very best interests of our young people at the heart of all we do. With that in mind, it is important for us now – more than ever – to remind the young people we don’t work with yet that we are here and ready to help you. There have been many reports over the last few weeks of young people taking their own lives. I, for one, am deeply saddened by this and know the whole team at CY share these sentiments.
This last year has been a tough one – some people are faring better than others but for those that are struggling – we want you to know that you don’t need to suffer in silence.
This may require a whole other blog but Youth Work can sometimes be misconceived. There can be a stigma attached to the idea that engaging with a youth work service must mean you’re a bad kid or ‘troubled’. I’ve lost count of the amount of times, upon learning my profession, people say to me ‘I bet that’s hard?’ or ‘tough job but surely rewarding’ as if young people are the hardest generation to engage with. It’s a common misconception of what youth work actually is. My role, and that of our organisation, doesn’t require young people to be ‘troubled’. The main pre-requisite is that they’re young – under 25 to be precise – and that’s it. We are open to everyone and will do our best to help you in any way you need.
At CY we run a long-standing employability service. We work with young people to develop their skills, build their confidence and figure out where they want to be in life. However, our focus is rarely just on making young people ‘employable’. We are not mental health experts, by any stretch of the imagination, but a huge part of our work is spent working alongside young people to improve their own mental health and this is why I implore any young person to consider making contact with the team here at CY.
If you feel a bit helpless, you maybe feel stuck in limbo at the moment, or you need a bit of guidance/ support with moving to your next step – please get in touch!
Remember, there are a tonne of organisations out there you can speak to. It may feel strange talking to a stranger – but everyone in our life is a stranger until we get to know them (even the people who bring us into this world, if you think about it).
Above all, you should know that everything WILL be ok. It doesn’t always help to hear that, as it’s such a cliché thing to say, but it’s so true. If you don’t believe me, join us at CY and ask me my story!
As quoted by one of my favourite films (Jojo Rabbit – well worth a watch)
“Let everything happen to you.
Beauty and terror.
Just keep going.
No feeling is final”
-Rainer Maria Rilke