Berkshire Youth has been serving the young people of Berkshire, delivering excellent and highly efficient youth support services for over 75 years. Founded as Boys Clubs in 1940 we are the only Berkshire county organisation of this type to continue supporting youth work.
Founded as Boys Club
In particular to cater for young people who are likely to miss out because they are not yet in crisis or face other barriers to access such as mental health challenges, caring responsibilities or low self-esteem and self-confidence.
Social Action Projects
Active & Healthy Lifestyle Projects
FOUNDATIONS OF CLUBS AND YOUTH WORK
RECENT BUDGETARY CONSTRAINTS
These cuts have seen a marked shift from prevention towards support for those already in crisis or at very high risk and increasing numbers of young people are not supported until their needs reach a crisis.
Statutory services cohort focus.
In Berkshire, local authorities report that over 50% of social services referrals are inappropriate; young people with no access to universal support but not meeting the threshold for social services support. As a result, young people who cannot access a commercial/formal offer are not adequately provided for.
Agree youth clubs support young people without alternative access.
THE LOCAL NEED
THERE ARE AREAS OF SIGNIFICANT MULTIPLE DEPRIVATION WITHIN WATERSIDE CENTRE’S CATCHMENT, INCLUDING THE MOST DEPRIVED AREA IN WEST BERKSHIRE, GREENHAM WARD WHICH RANKS IN WORST 20% OF AREAS IN THE ENGLISH INDICES OF MULTIPLE DEPRIVATION. AN AREA IN THATCHAM NORTH ALSO RANKS IN THE BOTTOM 30%.
Areas ranking in bottom 30% for education attainment.
Areas in the bottom 30% for crime.
Areas in the bottom 30% for income deprivation.
Young people in Berkshire many facing poor life chances.
West Berkshire children living in poverty.
Young people in West Berkshire with mental health disorders.
We propose to refurbish the building, providing:
- A facility for the young people of Newbury: a youth club, activities, a safe space
- A community building available for clubs and societies
- A valued asset for the Newbury community
The Waterside Centre:
- Constructed in 1960’s
- Good bus and train service
- Facing the River Kennet
- Owned and occupied by West Berkshire Council
- Currently under utilised
- Ground ﬂoor = 687.2m2. First ﬂoor = 117.6m2
- Mainly WBC offces, two employees
- Some contact with young people re drug counselling etc.
- Occasional use of climbing wall
- Canoe races, four Sundays per year
- YMCA, one evening per week
- Ukulele group, one evening per week
The building is very well located, and if refurbished could provide all of the following.
A safe space for the young people of Newbury:
- Youth clubs and activities
- Supporting young people with social problems
Facilities for the local community:
- Climbing wall
- Music groups
- Dance studio
- Operated by Berkshire Youth with a local advisory board, including young people
- Activities – climbing, theatre, dance and water based activities
- Youth & Community Zone and an Activity Zone
- Positive role models and mentors for young people
- Generate commercial income – be self sustaining
- Managed – an inspiring manager, supported by sessional and specialist instructors
Partnerships to access other services.
Open seven days a week
Provider of activities that enhance health.
Key operating principles:
- Be a safe neutral place for all young people
- A place for the development of social enterprise
- Inclusive of all young people, families and communities
- Operate robust safeguarding policies
- Offer appropriate challenge and adventure to all young people
- A professional manager will be required
- The manager will be supported by an admin/finance role, and café manager
- Part time staff will be need to support youth work, climbing, canoeing etc.
With professional management, a refurbished Waterside Centre will provide:
- An excellent facility for the young people of Newbury
- A community building, available for clubs and societies
- A financially self sustaining model