Ykids is a charity working in Bootle, a town on the outskirts of Liverpool with high rates of deprivation, the young people and families we work with face many barriers which often puts them on the edge of society; unemployment, lack of available jobs, low qualifications, poor housing, poor health – for some, it’s a long list.
“Every time my son comes home from Rise, he’s a different child!” Two parents were talking about a project their teenagers attended: “He’s happy and relaxed, what do they do there?” Tom (name changed) attends our Rise group and has had a difficult time engaging with school. Local charities often have the privilege of working with the sorts of people who struggle to find a place in society, who, like Tom, for one reason or another the system struggles to support.
At Ykids, and I’m sure at most local charities we have the benefit of knowing the stories behind the statistics- and we’ve got some of our own, 30% of our staff were once service users, 64% of families we work with tell us their self-esteem has improved since they started working with us, 73% of our young people feel good about themselves as a result of being part of our groups. Statistics paint a broad picture of the personal successes we help our service users achieve.
Tom, who returns home from our Rise group happy and relaxed, often returns home early from school in trouble. When Tom wasn’t disrupting lessons, he was like a brick wall- unmotivated and uncompromising. We first met him when he was put in an alternative education project we co-delivered with the school. Ykids have now been engaging with Tom for over a year, since September 2016 we’ve seen him weekly in school for mentoring sessions. He recently told a teacher that the only reason he attends school is so he can meet with Neil, our secondary schools worker.
As a local charity Ykids doesn’t promise to solve problems- but sometimes we do, and we can’t promise to transform people into model citizens- although sometimes that happens too. #LocalCharitiesDay is an exciting opportunity to find out about amazing ways that people are transforming our communities at grassroots level, consider supporting local charities with volunteering and regular giving- you might just find something that’s right up your street!
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