What this is:
A targeted weekly youth club for young people with additional needs, supported by peer leaders from our young leaders programme, providing a range of planned activities to develop life skills and increase socialisation. The programme is agreed in advance with those attending the sessions suggesting ideas for projects or activities they would like to have a go at.
Why we run it:
Learning difficulties and disabilities can be very isolating, especially in a rural community, so it is important to us that young people facing additional barriers can meet others in a safe, supported environment and know that they are not alone. Through this project, young people are able to meet others in their local community, develop social skills, and undertake valuable practical learning opportunities and experiences that will help them later in life. This project also encourages integration into our other sessions.
Who it’s for:
Young People aged 11 – 18 who have additional needs, are vulnerable or find socialising with others difficult.
When and where it runs:
Sessions run at Mere Youth Centre from 6:30-9:00pm every Tuesday night and we provide transport from Tisbury and surrounding villages.
What young people say:
“Coming to youth club has helped me gain skills to get a job and prepare me for college later this year. Also, I have made a lot of friends and I have also got a lot of people to talk to about life as it gets hard at times. I got bullied at school due to being autistic and people not understanding me so it made it very hard for me to make friends” - H, aged 16
There is also a member of staff available to come and meet with young people in their home, or another setting, to discuss any specific needs and barriers to participation, or to simply be a familiar face for them to meet if they come to a session. This key worker is also able to support young people with SEND to access other leisure time opportunities in the local community. If you are a young person who would like to access this support or know a young person who you feel would benefit from this and who would want to be involved, please get in touch or complete the downloadable referral form.
This fantastic and essential project is funded by a grant from BBC Children in Need.