About Venture Scotland
We are a small charity, working in the outdoors with some of Scotland’s most vulnerable young people who are struggling with their mental health. Over the past 30 years, from our centres in Glasgow and Edinburgh, we have become Scotland’s only provider of long-term, outdoor-based personal development. Each year, we support up to 100 young adults aged 16-30 who live in areas of deprivation where poverty, health inequality, unemployment, crime and alcohol/substance misuse are most prevalent, often resulting in suicide, self-harm, eating disorders and chaotic or isolated lives.
We believe that every young adult should have the opportunity to learn how to change so they can lead a happier, healthier and more fulfilled life. We build trusted and caring relationships with our participants and create a safe but challenging environment which enables personal growth, positive change and achievement.
Who we support
Young people who are struggling to understand and maintain their mental health, making them scared, anxious and isolated from their communities. Young people who are suicidal, self-harming or have eating disorders. Young people who have got to a tipping point in their lives and are asking us to help them to turn their lives around.
How Covid-19 has affected them
Covid-19 has exacerbated their issues and this will mean there are more young people needing help once we are fully out of lockdown. When asked what challenges they have faced during the lockdown, one of our current participants told us:
"My brain and what was going on inside my head. I had no break from myself. I felt trapped. I had a fear and anxiety about the pandemic. I struggled with the loss of routine which I had gained through Venture Scotland. I struggled with the loss of momentum my life had began to gain."
We have continued to engage with our young people throughout lockdown over Zoom and have designed a new virtual programme with outdoor elements. This has meant that we are now able to support young people from further afield.
What we will do to help
Our new programme will engage young people in a series of regular outdoor activities (e.g. scavenger hunts, exploring their local green space, identifying plants, cooking outdoors, sharing their local walks and making wild flower grenades) in small groups. Young people will also attend 1-2-1 support sessions with their Outdoor Programme Leader to help them make the right changes to positively impact on their lives.
Ultimately, our new programme will help young people to:
- Reduce their isolation and gain confidence
- Understand themselves and others by improving their social awareness
- Improve their physical, emotional and mental health
- Inspire them to reach their potential
How we will use the money
All the money raised in this crowdfunder will go towards the core costs of our long-term personal development programme.