Venue, date, times, etc.
Overall purpose and aims
Through the process of describing and analysing an example of practice, participants will be encouraged to:
- reflect critically on if and how this is ‘youth work’;
- explore what youth work practice means for them in their current work settings;
- consider whether there is a need for an on-going local ‘alliance’ for youth workers;
- contribute ideas and suggestions for IDYW’s future role and activity.
Programme Total time: c. 2.5- 3 hours
20 mins Full group
- Origins and context of IDYW story-telling workshops
- Aims and methods of this workshop
75-90 mins Small groups
Describe an example of your practice which represents you practising as a youth worker
3-4 participants’ give brief (2-3 minute) outlines of relevant ‘stories’
The group chooses one story for fuller description and analysis
The chosen story is described in detail
The group questions the story-teller to:
– as necessary, provide more information etc;
– clarify key processes, worker’s interventions, dilemmas and uncertainties, possible outcomes, what was ‘unfinished’, etc;
– in relation to the IDYW ‘cornerstones of youth work’ (over) – clarify how/how far this was – and/or was not – distinctively youth work.
15-20 mins Break
60 mins Small groups/full group exercise
Sustaining and developing youth work
– Are you trying to do this?
– If so, how?
Post-its re actions; possibilities; barriers
Key messages from the workshop:
– For individuals
– For IDYW
– For any local collective work
The IDYW ‘cornerstones’ of youth work
- The primacy of the voluntary principle; the freedom for young people to enter into and withdraw from Youth Work as they so wish.
- A commitment to conversations with young people which start from their concerns … out of which opportunities for new learning and experience can be created.
- The importance of association, of fostering supportive relationships, of encouraging the development of autonomous groups and ‘the sharing of a common life’.
- A commitment to valuing and attending to the here-and-now of young people’s experience rather than just focusing on ‘transitions’.
- An insistence upon a democratic practice, within which every effort is made to ensure that young people play the fullest part in making decisions about anything affecting them.
- The continuing necessity of recognising that young people are not a homogeneous group and that issues of class, gender, race, sexuality, disability and faith remain central.
- The essential significance of the youth worker themselves, whose outlook, integrity and autonomy is at the heart of fashioning a serious yet humorous, improvisatory yet rehearsed educational practice with young people.