Youth workers are responsible for planning, organizing and overseeing community programmes designed to redress inequalities and facilitate the personal, social and emotional development of young people.
You’ll generally work with young people aged between 11 and 25 in a variety of settings such as:
- colleges and universities;
- faith-based groups;
- youth centres.
- managing projects
- planning and organizing appropriate youth and community programmes
- establishing new youth services
- recruiting, training and supervising volunteers and paid employees
- undertaking detached ‘outreach’ youth work
- producing reports and business plans
- giving presentations
- promoting young people’s interests
- maintaining records
- managing and administering budgets and resources
- preparing and distributing publicity materials and displays
- liaising and working with parents, schools, the police and other community groups/organizations
- providing advocacy and counselling
- raising funds
Most employers and providers of youth work training will ask that you have some paid or voluntary experience of working with young people. This can be gained by involvement in student community schemes, pressure groups or community projects.
- a strong commitment to young people and an understanding of the factors affecting their lives;
- the ability to provide reliable support to young people in times of stress and act with integrity;
- excellent interpersonal skills, with the ability to establish good relationships with young people;
- patience, tolerance and flexibility;
- a sense of adventure and a willingness to try new things;
- formal communication skills for presentations, report writing and funding applications;
- the ability to treat young people’s concerns with respect, tact and sensitivity, while being aware of the limits that are required by confidentiality and the boundaries that govern the youth/youth worker relationship;
- a great deal of resilience.