YMCA England and Wales has officially launched
Y’s Girls, a programme specifically developed to offer help and support to young women and girls at risk of developing mental health issues, and they are calling on the community to get involved.
Working with social workers, schools and local organisations, Y’s Girls will connect vulnerable young women aged 9 to 14 with mentors from a range of different backgrounds to offer support and positively influence their lives.
Mentors will regularly meet up with their mentee over a 12 month period, no more than once a week for two hours, offering an informal environment with the opportunity to discuss anything that might be worrying them, from family and personal relationships,
to lifestyle and education.
As well as the sense of achievement that comes from empowering girls in your community to be their best, research indicates that volunteering can greatly improve employment prospects with a recent RVS report* stating that volunteering is credited with improving
job prospects; helping 1 in 3 young volunteers (16-19) get their first job. It boosts confidence and communication skills and is a catalyst for education ambition as well as benefitting mid-life work progression and career change. We know that happy volunteers
have the most positive impact on their communities; Y's Girls offers our volunteers full support, training opportunities and wellbeing events.
If you, or someone you know, can empower and support girls to be their best please
contact us for more information.
Ruth Gray, Y’s Girls Project Coordinator said:
“We’re absolutely delighted to be launching this vital mentorship and support programme to vulnerable young women and girls and we would love to hear from anyone locally who would be keen to get involved.
“With one-in-six children aged 5-16 now identified as having a probable mental disorder, an increase from one-in-nine just three years ago, we are all too aware that mental health issues among this age range are rising dramatically**. The chance to offer
that much needed time and support at such a critical stage is invaluable.
“The additional pressures of the pandemic, coupled with consistent and damaging cuts to youth services over the last decade, have left many young people isolated and without essential support. Projects like Y’s Girls provide a much-needed bridge within our
youth work, helping to reach vulnerable young women and girls in their time of need.”
RVS Digital April 2021
NHS Digital, October 2020
Ruth Gray - Ys Girls Project Coordinator Bradford