Tollcross YMCA

The purpose of Tollcross YMCA is to promote citizenship and develop community spirit by encouraging people to consider their enviornment and engage in intergenerational activities to bridge the gap between young and old. The general activities of Tollcross YMCA are to provide recreational facilities within a safe environment that promotes educational and social activities for the youth of Tollcross. Such as team building, music, drama and sport programmes, issue-based work such as employment programmes, alcohol and drug awareness/ diversion initiatives and street work to tackle gang violence. All youth club projects have been co-produced by the young people who sit on our youth committee. The days to hold the sessions and how these sessions will be delivered have all been directed by club members participating in projects. Our programmes ensure that we empower young people, through the YMCA which is why we have set up a youth committee to give young people in the area a voice and decision making capabilities regarding activities held at Tollcross YMCA and as a result of this the young people created the proposed roles and responsibilities for all youth work staff. All staff are CRBS checked and undertake first aid and child protection training. We operate under a number of youth policies and procedures to ensure that all young people are free from bullying, discrimination and all sensitive material and information is kept confidential. Both our building, staff and young people are also covered by public and employer liability insurance. All youth work staff undertake as part of their professional development the PDA in youth work which is a nationally recognised qualification. All our volunteers undertake lots of youth related certificated training as part of Youth Scotland and Tollcross YMCA youth work provision. Our Push P.L.A.Y. programme is a series of planned learning activities that are youth focused and delivered through peer-to-peer learning and development. This is achieved though certificated and skill development awards such as Saltire, DofE, Youth Achievement and St Andrews first Aid. In recognition of the sporting achievements made by young people under the programme Tollcross YMCA won the Active East award for the most innovative physical activity programme of 2013 and one of our young people Michael Corrigan aged 16 was nominated for Coach of the year. The award recognised that the multi sport programme was the only one of its kind that was funded and delivered by young people with minimal adult or youth work intervention over a twelve-month period. Currently Darran Gillan youth and community manager and Keith Jones music coordinator both at Tollcross YMCA have supported and developed Jack Torrance a second stage O2 recipient with his project Tollcross Recordings. Darran has also supported four group’s of eleven young people who where awarded 2014 Logo legacy status and help these groups delivered over 1000 physical activity hours and secured over £10,000 in funding from Active East, The Lottery and Deutsche Bank to fund free weekly sporting activities six days a week which lead to a number of them to be employed as youth workers at Tollcross YMCA. We celebrate the achievements of our young people through nominations to Regional and national youth volunteer and social enterprise awards. We use social media, music and film as a platform to demonstrate all the positive work our young people are achieving within their community which can be seen on our website and youtube channel. As part of the YMCA we also hold our own national youth celebration night as part of the national AGM. How this is do is by one or more young people becoming a project manager within a group of however many more young volunteers. All have appointed roles and all work as a team with the project manager leading the group towards achieving their goal. Out of this we see the individual skills develop of young people within the group who then in turn identify their own community project and recruit their own volunteer team of young people to deliver it and thus is the cycle.
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