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    Our work with young people

    Our Youth Work team supports young people across the areas where we work. This often starts with us going out and about on our estates to talk to young people and listening to what they need.

    We support young people to raise their own issues and find their own solutions by developing local youth forums, which go on to organise their own local activities or work with us to develop projects. In the past our youth forums have done everything from winning funding for local sports facilities to setting up a local youth club.

    We are also funded and commissioned to run various special youth projects, including HOUSE in the Eden Centre.

    We also lead the Edenbridge Youth Consortium,  group of youth work providers in Edenbridge offering a wide range of different clubs and workshops and deliver alcohol reduction work around the Sevenoaks district.

    • 8 -12s Project

      We run weekly clubs for children aged 8-12 in four areas across the district. The project is funded by Children in Need, local town and parish councils and Kent County Council.

      The aims of the project are to:​

      • Provide low cost recreational and educational activities for children aged between 8 and 12 years in their own community.
      • Promote acceptable behaviour and responsibility by encouraging children to devise and adhere to their own 'Charter of Rights'.
      • Increase children’s self confidence, skills and interests by introducing them to a wide range of activities in a safe and caring environment.

      The project provides regular, low cost, locally based activities in a safe environment with an emphasis on behaviour and positive communication and has been very successful in supporting the children who attend.

      How are the clubs staffed?
      The clubs are staffed by project workers directly employed by West Kent. We also encourage the involvement of volunteers. All staff and volunteers have an enhanced Disclosure and Barring check in place and references are taken prior to staff or volunteers working on the project. We work on a minimum adult to child ratio of 1:10. All activities are thoroughly risk assessed.

      Who can join?

      Children who may be experiencing a variety of difficulties at home or who may be in need of additional support outside of the school or home environment. Children are referred to the project by:

      • Teachers
      • Parents
      • Family support centres
      • Social services
      • Other professionals

      You can refer yourself to us however we may need further information to accept you. Please contact us for more information.

      Where and when are the sessions held?

      • New Ash Green: North Square, Longfield, DA3 8JT. Thursday night 6pm to 8pm
      • Sevenoaks: The Hope Church, Mill Lane, TN14 5AX. Tuesday night 5.30pm to 7.30pm
      • Swanley: The Junction, St Marys Road, BR8 7BU. Friday night 4.30pm to 6.30pm and Tuesday Nurture Group 3.30pm to 5pm
      • West Kingsdown: West Kingsdown Primary School, Fawkham Road, TN15 6JP. Wednesday night 5.30pm to 7.30pm
      • Edenbridge: Eden Centre, Four Elms Road, TN8 6BY. 8-12s session and nurture group Thursday 3.30pm to 5.30pm
      • Dunton Green: Dunton Green Pavillion, London Road. Monday 3.30pm to 5.30pm.

      The project is also funded by Children in Need, local town and parish councils and Kent County Council.

    • 11-19s and Youth Forums

      The 11-19s sessions are an open drop-in club funded by Town and Parish Councils, West Kent and Moat Housing Associations and anonymous donations.

      The aims of the project are to:​

      • Provide low cost recreational and educational activities for young people aged 11-19
      • Promote acceptable behaviour and responsibility 
      • Give young people a chance to say what they would like in their local area
      • Increase young people’s awareness of health and well-being, substance misuse and anti-social behaviour
      • Provide advice on training and employment.

      How are the clubs staffed?
      The clubs are staffed by project workers directly employed by West Kent. We also encourage the involvement of volunteers. All staff and volunteers have an enhanced Disclosure and Barring check in place and references are taken prior to staff or volunteers working on the project. We work on a minimum adult to young person ratio of 1:10. All activities are thoroughly risk assessed.

      Who can join?

      You can refer yourself to us however we may need further information to accept you. Please contact us for more information. Our Youth Forums are by invitation only to young people who attend the sessions. 

      Where and when are the sessions held?

      • New Ash Green: North Square, Longfield, DA3 8JT. Wednesday night 6pm-8pm
      • West Kingsdown: WKD The Bus, London Road, TN15 6BZ. Thursday night 6pm-8pm
      • HOUSE Edenbridge: The Eden Centre, Four Elms Road, TN8 6BY. Tuesday and Wednesday night 6-9pm and Friday 6.30-9.30pm.

      For more information please email youthservices@wkha.org.uk

    • Festivals and events

      Our youth team attend a variety of local festivals and events throughout the year. The team work with other local organisations such as Sevenoaks District Council to attend summer programmes, providing our residents with free activities for their children during school holidays.

      They carry out a range of free activities such as glitter faces, large games such as Jenga and Connect 4, along with competitions and freebies.  

      All our youth events are advertised on our website and social media pages. Please email us at youthservices@wkha.org.uk

    • School work

      We regularly visit primary and secondary schools in the Sevenoaks District. The project is funded by Kent County Council.

      The project runs for 6 weeks in each school. The aims of the project are to:​

      • Provide advice on health, well-being and general living
      • Attend PSHE days
      • Provide advice on training and employment

      How are the clubs staffed?
      The clubs are staffed by project workers directly employed by West Kent. We also encourage the involvement of volunteers. All staff and volunteers have an enhanced Disclosure and Barring check in place and references are taken prior to staff or volunteers working on the project. We work on a minimum adult to young person ratio of 1:10. All activities are thoroughly risk assessed. 

      For more information please email youthservices@wkha.org.uk

    • Residential trips and days out

      The project organises special outings which reflect the interests of the children, for example rock climbing, visits to the theatre or museums and short residential stays. These incur an additional cost, but where possible, the project will subsidise those children whose families cannot afford to pay the full cost.

      If you would like to become involved please contact youthservices@wkha.org.uk 

    FAQs

    • What is HOUSE?

      HOUSE is an open access youth drop in centre for young people aged 11-19, or up to 24 with additional needs. Our youth workers are on hand to provide advice, support and guidance around a range of fun and engaging activities for young people to take part in.

      HOUSE takes place at The Eden Centre, Four Elms Road, Edenbridge, Kent, TN8 6BY.

      We are open Tuesday and Wednesday evenings from 4-7pm and Friday evenings from 6.30-9.30pm. The aims of HOUSE are to:

      • Provide low cost recreational and educational activities for young people aged 11-19
      • Promote acceptable behaviour and responsibility
      • Give young people a chance to say what they would like in their local area
      • Increase young people’s awareness of health and well-being, substance misuse and anti-social behaviour
      • Provide advice on training and employment.

    • What is the 8-12s project?

      The 8-12s project is a referral only project, for children aged 8-12, who need a bit more support over and above what they receive at school and home. Most of our children are referred to us as they lack in confidence or social skills.

      The 8-12s project is delivered in several locations. We have clubs in Sevenoaks, Dunton Green, Edenbridge, New Ash Green, West Kingsdown and Swanley.

      The aims of the project are to:
      • Provide low cost recreational and educational activities for children aged 8-12 years in their own community.
      • Promote acceptable behaviour and responsibility by encouraging children to devise and adhere to their own “Charter of Rights”.
      • Increase children’s self-confidence, skills and interests by introducing them to a wide range of activities in a safe and caring environment.

    • How do I know my child will be safe?

      We take the safety of all our children and young people very seriously.

      All staff have an enhanced DBS and partake in a full training programme that equips them to work safely with young people. We risk assess all our venues and activities to ensure they are safe for young people to partake in.

      We proactively challenge bullying and negative behaviour to ensure young people feel safe to attend our clubs and activities and will act efficiently if we receive any information that a young person feels bullied, threatened or targeted. We have club rules in place at all our youth work activities and any young people not adhering to the activities will be asked to leave.

      All staff also have full Safeguarding Children training and we adhere to our organisational Safeguarding Policy.

    • Does my child need to register?

      Yes, we do require that all young people complete membership forms to attend any of our clubs and services. This is important to us, as we need to have parent/ guardian and emergency contact details, as well as information about any allergies or medical conditions.

      Safety is our utmost concern, so we won’t let children or young people attend our clubs if we don’t have accurate and up to date information.

    • Does my child need to bring anything along?

      No, once you have signed a membership form, you needn’t bring anything else along. We ask that if you have any medicines that you highlight this to a member of staff upon entry and we can keep them for you for the duration of the session if needed.

    • How much does it cost to attend?

      Some of our youth clubs are free and some we do charge for, where we need to cover our costs and ensure we have the resources we need to deliver the session.

      The maximum we charge per session is £2 per session, so it is a very minimal cost. If you are struggling financially, there are certain circumstances where we can waive this cost, so please get in touch to let us know. On certain occasions, such as trips, we may also charge a separate, but still minimal fee to cover our costs.

    • My child struggles in social situations, can they still attend?

      Absolutely! We have youth workers on hand to help smooth the way for young people who are nervous or shy. As a parent/ guardian, you are also welcome to attend a taster session with your child to see if the service is a good fit for you.

    • How do you accommodate children with additional needs such as a learning or physical disability?

      We take pride in ensuring our services are inclusive and welcoming to all.

      Our youth workers receive a full training programme and have awareness and experience in working with children with ASD, ADHD and a variety of other additional needs. Please get in touch if you have specific concerns you’d like to talk through, we’re happy to help and see how we can support your child’s attendance.

      As a parent/guardian, you are also welcome to attend a taster session with your child to see if the service is a good fit for you. 

    • What is the dropping off/ picking up procedure?

      We require an adult to drop off and pick up all children who are not yet attending secondary school. Once your child has moved on to secondary school we are happy for them to drop in themselves.

      We will ask you when you register, to let us know which adults you’d be happy to collect your child. We will not release your child to any adult you have not approved and will always ask for ID if we do not recognise the collecting adult, or if they are collecting for the first time.

    For more information please contact our youth work team at youthservices@wkha.org.uk.