Webteam: September 2015
On 2nd September, I started as Youth and Community Worker for Pulrose. To succeed in my role, I realised that making and developing relationships with the community at large was vital. I concentrated on the young people via the schools and then with, the completion of 'Manor Ark', developed opportunities embracing the wider community.
My first stop was in the local Primary School, where I developed a good relationship with staff, children and parents, by involving myself in various ways:
- I have been going into the school on a daily basis to help with reading groups.
- Helping out at school discos, Christmas and summer fairs.
- School trips, Sports day and also at a school sports event at the local sport centre during 'Healthy Eating Week'.
- At Christmas Y3 children had an RE curriculum day at a local church, where I was able to lead a workshop to show the true meaning of Christmas, with the children re-enacting the Christmas nativity.
I was involved with the Year 6 Children and their transition days to the local Secondary school which enabled me to work alongside them getting to know their new schools.
During the Easter term I was asked to run a reading club across the school, both Key stage 1 and 2.
The connections I have through the school, allowed me to develop relationships with the children's families, as the school runs a regular coffee morning with Mothers, which in turn led to me becoming involved in a 10 week parenting course.
We also ran a competition in the school to name our new house, and we certainly had some interesting ideas, but the winner was in Y3 and 'Manor Ark', was the chosen name.
Scripture Union Ministry Trust (SUMT)
With the Secondary schools I have joined up with SUMT and their Christian Union groups. Via this link I have had the privilege to lead sessions on RE curriculum days, for 'Life Matters' Y7 programme, and 'Life Path' Y5 programme. All these helped raise my profile with the young people and teachers of the district. This culminated in the secondary school asking me to assist them with their Ballakermeen World War Day.
SUMT have also given me the opportunity to train, and take part in their Leadership course.
- Currently we have a Friday Night Youth Club Session 7-9pm with 24 young people regularly attending, and we have also made trips to locally run Christian youth events.
- On Sundays we have a bible club called 'Ark Explorers 'for Primary school children, and also a Youth Bible Club which is well attended on a regular basis.
- On a Tuesday night we run a Drama club for the secondary school students which also has been well attended.
- At Christmas I ran a 'Christmas Cracker' community event, this was a Christmas craft day based on the Nativity. This was a lovely family day, in which over 50 people attended and shared mince pies, tea/coffee in a festive spirit.
- I have helped on a Methodist Holiday Club for a week as a group leader for Y4-Y6
- Been a leader on the Scripture Union Beach Mission on the Island for two weeks. Leading Y1-Y2 groups. This was during my holiday to enhance my leadership skills.
- And kept up to date with current issues in Christian work by attending locally run courses.
We are currently doing a survey on the estate to see what the community would like, but I have already instigated some activities for September such as:
- Pre-school story time.
- Coffee and chat sessions.
- After School Homework/ revision Club.
- After School reading club with the Primary School aged children.
- Cooking Club.
I shall continue in my role of helping at the Primary School, working with SUMT on their projects and Christian Union groups at Secondary Schools.
From September 2014 the year has flown by. It has been a privilege and an honour to be in this role, working alongside so many different people, building relationships, loving the young and vulnerable and seeing them grow. I look forward to the next 12 months and the journey that God has placed in front of me, as I continue to develop my role.
However none of this would have been possible without the help, advice and support given to me by Revd David Shirtliff and the Methodist Leadership, for which I am truly grateful.
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Ballacreggan Farm, Sound Road, Glen Maye