As One is a youth project founded by Danielle McKenzie, located in Greenwich, South East London. The project's main aims are to create an alternative structure for young people and a sense of unity amongst the young people in our community. We endeavour to foster an ethos of family that runs through the heart of all that we do. We work with young people to enable them to find the best version of themselves through numerous workshops and targeted interventions.
While all the work that we do is important, we believe listening to our young people and giving them a space that they truly desire should always be at the forefront. Young people asked us to create a safe space; a space where they can chill and be themselves... so that is what we are doing.
We are currently in the process of acquiring a property in SE7 which we can renovate into a space that truly reflects our young people’s wants and needs. Our hope is that the space will house:
- a common space which welcomes young people and visitors into the project;
- a studio space where 1-2-1 and small group sessions can take place (dance, boxing, speaking and listening classes etc);
- a kitchen where we can not only prepare food for the young people but also teach them how to cook healthy meals for themselves and their families;
- a spacious garden that will allow for summer outdoor activities;
- a music studio as well as an editing room;
- and a homework lounge kitted out with computers/laptops and other equipment essential for learning - we also hope that this space could also be used as a quiet space/therapeutic space.
- To create a safe space for young people within Greenwich borough. Where a team of skilled, passionate and vetted volunteers and youth workers can tackle complex issues around knife crime and youth violence whilst also responding to other complex issues that are a result of the covid-19 pandemic, such as loneliness and isolation.
- Engaging young people in positive activities to promote social inclusion and reduce anti-social / offending behaviour.
- To foster a sense of unity amongst the young people in our community.
- To nurture young people within our community, ensuring they have access to personal development, skills-building and interventions that’ll help them grow into the best versions of themselves.
THE YOUTH CLUB
A safe space for young people in the community to ‘chill’ and be themselves whilst engaging in positive social activities to promote inclusion and reduce anti-social/offending behaviour. Young people in Greenwich have expressed to our director that they feel they have nowhere within their local area that they can ‘hang-out’ or ‘chill’, this often leads to young people being observed negatively from older people within the community or leaves young people feeling alienated from their community, it also leads to youth involvement with crime (CCE) and antisocial behaviour. We want to stop this whilst encouraging a sense of unity within the young people in our community.
WORKSHOPS & INTERVENTIONS
Workshops will be run weekly (daily within school holidays) that engage young people and help them to develop: character; skills; mindset; and purpose. Typical workshops to be delivered include: speaking and listening/communication and confidence building; dance; food preparation and nutrition (how to plan and cook healthy meals for themselves and their families); skills for life (painting and decorating, budgeting, organising/planning a project management); music, including music production and editing; graphic design and digital imaging.
Interventions would be targeted to specific young people with the agreement of parents/carers. These targeted interventions may include: managing emotions; art therapy (visual art, expressive art and music); 1-2-1 physical activities such as boxing; engagement with victim support and other outside agencies; as well as others.
There will be a space dedicated to homework/revision within the youth project. This space will be well equipped with ICT equipment as well as stationery and exercise books/paper. As a qualified teacher our director is passionate about giving young people additional space to encourage home learning/continual learning outside of school to support the educational development of young people in our community. We know that many young people within our community do not have access to ICT equipment, basic stationary or quiet space to conduct efficient home study (Covid-19 related home-learning really highlighted these issues that we may not have known about – or known the extent of - before); this has a negative impact on young people’s educational development and puts them at a disadvantage when compared to their peers. We want to bridge this gap and ensure that disadvantaged pupils have equal right to educational development as others in the country.
There will be a dedicated holiday club that runs over all national school holidays (in relation to the boroughs term dates). These holiday clubs will provide an open space for young people throughout the day for the majority of every school holiday. The weeks will consist of dedicated days (for example, arts and crafts day, performing arts day, gaming day, computing/digital design day, etc.) there will also be pre-planned trips/residentials – allowing inner city kids to experience places that they may have never experienced before. Studies show that young people from disadvantaged background’s lack cultural capital; we are passionate about allowing young people from our community to experience new things that by nature increase the richness of their understanding of the UK, culture and nature. We believe that trips outside of London create a sense of awe within young people, take them out of their comfort zone and also allow them to dream/create/express themselves. Some young people struggle to relate to characters within their school texts because they cannot perceive their realities/settings, we want to ensure that these barriers don’t exist in our young people’s education. We would also provide hot meals (packed lunch when on trips) for free on all of our open days throughout the school holidays.