It’s the school summer holidays, so this month we wanted to highlight STAG’s youth work and up-coming activities over the break. Please get in touch with our youth worker, Caitlin (firstname.lastname@example.org; 07745539629 Tuesday – Thursday), if you want to find out more or book places.
STAG’s weekly youth group has been running for many years, organised by our development worker, Kathleen, with great success. But in August 2021, we were lucky enough to be awarded funding from the Government’s Kickstart scheme to employ a local young Traveller and support them to learn more about youth work. The successful applicant, Caitlin, has been a real asset to STAG and her successes mean we’ve been able to apply for funding to keep on a youth worker post once the Kickstart scheme funding ended.
Over the last year, Caitlin has been working to try and get more young Travellers, who hadn’t come to STAG’s youth group before, involved in activities. Here she shares her thoughts on the last year with us:
“Our youth group is going very well. I have a group every week on Wednesdays and for my older youth members every two weeks on Tuesdays. They really enjoy going out for food and for the younger ones they love painting and colouring in.
My hope for the future is more Southwark Travellers join the youth group and get more involved: the more, the better. The kids love to talk about their future and what they like to do when they’re older. The older kids help out with the younger kids when they are hyper, which is very helpful for me.
My youth group really enjoys talking about our culture, how we were raised and what the differences are between Travellers and non-Travellers. Although they are young they know more about our culture than some older generations, they love to educate non-Travellers .
My youth group is all different ages, the youngest being 4 to the oldest being 13. I would love to get a few older as I feel they need a break even more than the younger ones do.
I am very grateful for my youth group. One of my youth group members said to me “I love coming to STAG youth group its so relaxing and I like getting the break from home and school. My favorite part about STAG is the parties and going to Nando’s”
This summer Caitlin is planning go-karting, trampolining, cinema vists and bowling activities. Be sure to get in touch with her if you are a young Traveller who wants to join in, or you know of a Traveller family who would benefit from some free activities for thier children over the long holiday.
All STAG youth group activities are provided free to children and young people from Gypsy, Roma or Traveller communities with a connection to Southwark (although you may have to pay a small deposit for activities that require pre-booking, which will be refunded afterwards).