Reflecting on 14 Years at Youth Cymru: The Value of Youth Work 

During Youth Work Week 2024, as I reflect on my 14 years with Youth Cymru, I am filled with a deep sense of pride and accomplishment. Over this time, I’ve witnessed firsthand the transformative power of youth work and its profound impact on young people and communities across Wales. 

Building Bridges and Creating Opportunities
One of the most rewarding aspects of my journey has been seeing young individuals develop from uncertain beginnings into confident, capable adults. Youth work at Youth Cymru is not just about providing support but building bridges and creating opportunities. We’ve developed programs that cater to a wide range of needs, from employment and training to mental health support and creative arts. Each initiative has been a step towards empowering young people to overcome barriers and achieve their full potential. 

The Power of Mentorship
Mentorship has played a crucial role in our work. I’ve seen how a positive role model can change a young person’s trajectory. By offering guidance, encouragement, and a listening ear, mentors at Youth Cymru have helped countless youths navigate the complexities of adolescence. The bonds formed through these relationships have often extended beyond the programs, fostering lifelong connections and continuous support networks. 

Community and Belonging
Youth Cymru has always emphasized the importance of community and belonging. Creating safe, inclusive spaces where young people can express themselves and feel valued has been at the heart of our mission. These environments not only provide a refuge from external pressures but also foster a sense of belonging and community spirit. Watching young people come together, support one another, and celebrate their achievements has been incredibly fulfilling. 

Adapting to Change  
Over the years, the landscape of youth work has evolved, and Youth Cymru and Youth Work has adapted to meet new challenges. Whether it’s addressing the rise in digital technology, tackling mental health issues exacerbated by the pandemic, or advocating for social justice, our ability to pivot and respond to the changing needs of young people has been crucial. This adaptability has ensured that we remain relevant and effective in our support. 

Looking Ahead
As I reflect on these past 14 years, I am excited about the future of youth work in Wales. resilience, creativity, and passion of the young people we work with continue to inspire me. I am confident that, with ongoing support and innovative approaches, Youth Cymru will continue to make a significant difference in the lives of young people for many years to come. 

In conclusion, my time at Youth Cymru has reaffirmed my belief in the value of youth work. It has shown me that investing in young people is not just an investment in their future but in the future of our society. I am grateful for the opportunity to be part of this incredible journey and look forward to continuing to contribute to this vital cause.

Inspired by what you’ve read? There are many ways you can get involved with Youth Cymru and help us empower young people across our community.

Volunteer: Share your time and skills to make a positive impact in the lives of young people.
Donate: Your contributions enable us to provide essential programs and services that support youth development and empowerment.
Partner: Collaborate with us to create innovative and impactful initiatives for young people.

Take a look here to learn more about our work and discover how you can contribute to our mission.