The Ball Keeps Rolling in Newcastle

Developing and Defending Youth Work: Report of a Workshop

Monday,15th June, 10.00-13.30, St John’s Church Hall, Newcastle Upon Tyne

Over 90 people from statutory and voluntary sector youth organisations and services attended this event in Newcastle.

Sarah Banks chaired the event, welcoming participants and explaining the purpose of the workshop: to discuss, debate and reflect on the current state of youth work practice, and to consider what further actions might be taken following the event.

Bernard Davies spoke about the dangers of putting economic values before moral values, and gave a brief overview of some of the key findings of a study recently published by De Montfort University, Leicester, ‘Squaring the Circle’, that examines the current state of youth work in several English local authorities.

Bernard Davies In Defence Newcastle 2

Keeks McGarry and Don McDonald then gave an overview of policy and practice changes in the last decade, from their perspectives as local authority training officer and voluntary sector youth worker.

Discussion groups were convened to consider the following questions:

  1. What are the distinctive features of youth work?

  2. You have attended an event with ‘defending youth work’ in the title. What is it that you are trying to defend?

  3. What are the main threats and opportunities in the current climate?

  4. What strategies as individuals and collectively should we adopt to defend and develop what’s good about youth work?

  5. Do we endorse the In Defence of Youth Work open letter?

In Defence Newcastle 1

For more and to see the group feedback  and ideas for action, go to the Regional Reports page. Evidently 25 pages of flip chart notes plus Power Point presentation are yet to be sorted, a summary of which is to follow!

In common with London there was a passionate desire to meet up nationally and forge a united campaign.

Thanks to Sarah Banks for the notes and Jean Spence for the photos.

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