New facility for young people in Marlborough
We are delighted to announce that Wiltshire Youth for Christ, in partnership with Devotion and churches in Marlborough, will be trialling a “drop in” facility for young people from Easter onwards. We are grateful to St Mary’s Church for the use of the amazing facilities in the newly refurbished Church Cottage on Silverless Street. Our initial plan is that the drop in will run on Monday afternoons, from 3-5.00pm, starting on Monday 24th April.
The drop in is open to all young people of secondary school age, free of charge. It will be staffed by our senior youth worker, Steve Dewar, accompanied by volunteers, all of whom hold enhanced DBS clearance. Steve has many years of experience working with young people across Wiltshire in schools, community projects and churches; he is fully trained in terms of safeguarding, first aid and food hygiene.
Young people will be offered hot or cold soft drinks, healthy snacks and a warm, engaging, safe and welcoming environment to sit and chat, play games or listen to music. Steve and the volunteers will be on hand to offer a sympathetic listening ear, support and encouragement as required. To complement and promote local provision they will signpost young people to other agencies and activities as appropriate. One of our key aims will be to include ideas from the young people themselves and hear how they would like the facility to develop in future. We will review the drop in with our partners at the end of the school year in July, taking into account feedback from young people and local stakeholders, to determine future developments.
Wiltshire Youth for Christ is a small, local independent faith-based charity, with a track record of successful and sustained engagement in North Wiltshire, mainly in and around Devizes and Trowbridge. We provide mentoring in schools and are engaged in a number of community initiatives. Recently, for example, we were an integral part of the successful 2022 “Roots and Shoots” project run in partnership with Wiltshire Police and Wiltshire Football Association; we are currently providing diversionary detached Youth Work activities in Devizes as part of the Safer Streets initiative. We are also involved in community outreach in several housing developments in association with Trowbridge town council. Taking a holistic approach is important to how we operate, building accountable relationships with young people in various settings. We place a high value on partnership, recognising the importance of youth work being “local”, with ownership by and collaboration with residents, organisations and businesses, enabling them to support and invest in their young people.
We are motivated as a charity by our passion to share God’s love in practical ways with young people, who face increasing challenges in terms of mental health, the aftereffects of the pandemic and a wide range of pressures. We believe in them, their potential for leading positive change and development in communities and their unique value as individuals with a diverse range of skills and gifts. If we can, through working together on this project, play a part in helping them to find their place and develop confidence and direction, we will see it as a success.
We have been encouraged by the support we have received from many groups and individuals in Marlborough as we have explored these plans. We would be delighted to hear from more members of the community about your views and how this project might be developed and, crucially, linked into other ongoing provision. You may have questions or concerns or would like to help. Please feel free to contact us:
Steve Dewar, Senior Youth Worker: email@example.com
Fergus Stewart, Director: firstname.lastname@example.org