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Great Yarmouth & Waveney Mind

Great Yarmouth & Waveney Mind
Disability

Great Yarmouth & Waveney Mind

'Education without knowing it'

Young people with mental health problems can quickly find themselves disenfranchised from mainstream education, culture and sport. Adequate support services are vital if these people are to be given the opportunities others take for granted.

Four years ago, the charity Mind recognised this problem in Great Yarmouth. With no services for many 16-18 year olds, and existing adult services frequently inappropriate for 18-25 year olds, Great Yarmouth and Waveney Mind conceived the project ‘Young People in Mind’.

Initially, the charity set up a drop-in centre, called The Place. Evidence of an existing and previously unmet demand was underlined by a six-fold growth in attendance during the first three months of operation. Today, the centre provides activity groups accessible to members six days a week, as well as comprehensive individual support for its 150-plus referrals and 42 regular members. Besides literature and art workshops, the centre also runs its own sports group.

‘It has been fantastic to help young people in this way,’ says senior resource officer, Mark Osbourn. ‘We are actually getting them involved in education away from the mainstream, without them realising it. A lot of the kids don’t have the confidence to go to college as they are too anxious. But here they’re sitting down, writing and reading out their own poetry. That’s a hard thing for anyone to do.’

‘It has been tremendous to see the positive impact it has had on young people’s lives,’ he concludes.

Penny Lockyear
Chief executive 
31 Caister Road
Great Yarmouth
Norfolk
NP30 4DA
01493 842129
Reg no. 1059886

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