Youth Community Support Agency (YCSA) are seeking new members for their Board of Directors / Charity Trustees.

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Can you help?

YCSA was established over 20 years ago to provide support services to BME young people aged 12 -25 across Glasgow, from our base in the Pollokshields area of Glasgow’s Southside.
Applicants should be passionate about ensuring equality for young people and have experience of serving on, or working with, a Management Committee / Board of a voluntary sector organisation.

We would welcome applications from people from diverse ethnic backgrounds and with experience in the youth work field. We are particularly looking for applicants with skills/experience in one or more of the following areas:

• Fundraising
• Finance/audit
• Marketing and social media
• Human Resources
• Criminal justice

Please note these posts are voluntary, although reasonable expenses, related to your duties as a Trustee, will be paid.
Board meetings are held monthly at YCSA offices and attendance at subgroup and additional meetings may be required.
For further information about YCSA visit our website www.ycsa.org.uk
To apply contact enquiries@ycsa.org.uk to ask for a copy of the Board Members remit and then please send your CV with a supporting statement (one page maximum) detailing the qualities you can bring to our Board, and also how you heard about this position.

Youth Community Support Agency, 48 Darnley Street, Glasgow G41 2SE 0141 420 6600

Tel: 0141 420 6600
Email: enquiries@ycsa.org.uk

Volunteers Week 2017 – Testimonial from Ian Hamilton

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I started volunteering with YCSA in November 2016 after seeing an advert on Volunteer Scotland that matched my interests and skills and could offer me great experience towards my desire to work in a Community Learning and Development related organisation. Though I had graduated with a Post Graduate Diploma in Community Learning and Development I was looking for more experience and this appeared to be a perfect opportunity.

YCSA’s values of Responsibility, Empower, Support, Potential, Equality, Challenge and Trust (spelling RESPECT) are in line with my own values and it was clear from the beginning that it was a very supportive atmosphere with these values not only embedded in the work carried out with young people but also forming the workplace culture. From the induction with the Volunteers Manger to working with the rest of the team, it was clear there it was a very creative group of people who were also very welcoming and friendly.

During my placement I was offered the opportunity to gain experience in facilitating and co-facilitating group work as this was something that I was personally looking to gain. I was teamed up with an experienced Programme Worker and two other volunteers to plan and carry out a project called Pro:motion that included drama workshops working with Toonspeak, campaigning and design workshops with MacLab and creating a film which was scripted, produced and edited by the young people who were participating.

Having learned much from this experience and gaining confidence I then applied for a Project Worker position which has given me further opportunities to develop by creating programmes and workshops and facilitating groups with the continued support from my colleagues.

Tel: 0141 420 6600
Email: enquiries@ycsa.org.uk

Why ‘Represent’?

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The idea behind ‘Represent’ originated from the roots of Hip hop culture where you are encouraged to represent where you are from, your community and what you stand for. This was a great opportunity to develop a program which creates a platform for young people to do exactly that through creative and digital means.

It allows young people to reach their potential by giving them a voice and access to tools they wouldn’t ordinarily be able to work with. In order to express themselves creatively they are put in a position where they have to gain technical experience in working with digital media equipment to create their content. I think this is helpful in a number of ways because if they feel ownership of their work, they develop the type of confidence that assures them they can achieve great things and choose career paths that they otherwise might have felt was too complex to progress into.

I personally have a passion for the culture and enjoy seeing youth breaking barriers so I am very happy to be able to provide an opportunity for those that will benefit from it and in turn help other people.

Overall, I think it empowers young people with the belief that they can do things they are interested in and are able to develop skills to work towards their aspirations.

Tel: 0141 420 6600
Email: enquiries@ycsa.org.uk

Festive Wishes!

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Sending all our friends, partners, volunteers and young people the best wishes over this festive period! We will be closing for a short time from the 23rd of December to the 4th of January. We look forward to working with you all in the New Year!

Tel: 0141 420 6600
Email: enquiries@ycsa.org.uk

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Our Development Worker, Clare McBrien, reflects on The Ctrl Alt Delete Recording Sessions at YCSA

When I started working at YCSA, the Chief Executive Umar Ansari asked me, ‘What do you care about?’ I told him, ‘Music.’ When he asked why, I stammered while trying to condense my complex relationship with it into one pithy sentence. Eventually I said, ‘Because I want everyone to experience what playing music with other people is like.’ Not particularly pithy…

I often lament the fact that there isn’t a combination of words intricate enough to express what music means to me. Despite taking lessons and playing in school bands, I spent most of my life convinced that I wasn’t ‘creative’, believing I wasn’t part of the select few who had permission to paint, sing, build and perform. So I didn’t. However, when my early 20s brought with it mental ill health, new friendships, and a sense of now-or-never, I mustered just enough self belief to pick up my clarinet again.

Fast forward a couple of years and I need to be ‘creative’. Because when I am involved in the process of creating a combination of noises, movements or words, my mind is still. I go back to the beginning and renegotiate my place. I give shape and form to emotions I don’t know how to express any other way. I have fun with my friends.

That’s why I care about music. That’s what I want everyone to have the opportunity to experience. Luckily, my inability to express this didn’t deter Umar from trusting me to design and run the YCSA 2016 Summer Music Programme. It was my hope that young BME people in need of support would have the opportunity to understand themselves better, to see how they connect with others and to tell their story.

For three weeks YCSA staff, volunteers and ten young people from diverse cultural backgrounds learned vocal techniques, experimented with different instruments, and wrote songs that discussed issues of identity, conflict and resilience. All of this led up to the Ctrl Alt Del Recording Sessions, where they co-wrote lyrics with professional artists via a twitter lyric swap. They then took these lyrics and wrote and recorded a track.

The tangible result of this was several songs recorded by the young people and the artists they worked with, the most substantial of which, in my opinion, is the latest song called ‘New Home’.

However, it’s the quiet changes in understanding, knowledge or behaviour that reconfirmed my belief in how music empowers. When I listen to ‘New Home’, I see the young man who struggled to control his anxiety find stillness when playing, or another participant step up to the mic who didn’t have the confidence to do so before. I watch a young person’s frustration melt when communicating through music rather than stilted English and young women’s eyes light up when saying ‘I feel like Beyoncé.’ I can hear the honest conversations, the shared pain, the challenges met, the growth in self-belief, the laughter, the trust, the hope, the fun.

That’s why I care about music, and I’m so grateful to have been trusted to share that passion with young people at YCSA.

Tel: 0141 420 6600
Email: enquiries@ycsa.org.uk