Founded in 2011, Esteem network member, YouMatter, work with thousands of young people across Jersey every year, helping them respond thoughtfully to the pressures, choices and challenges that they face.
As well as providing high-quality, interactive and engaging workshops for young people in schools, youth clubs and other community settings, YouMatter also offer one-to-one and small-group work for young people identified as needing additional support with any of the issues covered by their key areas of work.
Taking into account the young people’s specific needs, the team tailor a programme of sessions accordingly.
The feedback from young people and professionals alike about this programme is extremely positive. One professional explained, “The impact on young people that have experienced dysfunctional relationships, impacting on their own relationship choices is notable. They visibly demonstrate improved self-confidence and are able to identify difficulties with a clear understanding of how change can be made.”
Indeed, young people who receive this one-to-one support report that their self-esteem and self-worth is boosted. They appreciate how they are helped to consider their choices carefully and to thoughtfully respond rather than reacting in the moment. They learn that they deserve positive relationships, that they are worth waiting for, and that other people should not pressure or coerce them into anything they don’t want to do.
Young people also say that they value YouMatter’s independent status; separate from both home and school. The team are trusted adults the young people can talk with, who can both educate and support them around the issues that they face. This is reflected in the following feedback from two young people who have benefitted from YouMatter’s one-to-one work.
“It’s been helpful because I have thought and reflected on my relationship and have come to the conclusion that it isn’t healthy. It has allowed me to reflect on things and see it in a different way that I probably wouldn’t have found on my own. It is nice to have someone to talk to that is from the outside looking in and doesn’t have any pre-opinions on the situation.”
“The sessions have been helpful because I have realised my bad decisions and how next time, if I come into a similar situation, I will know how to handle it and how to respond. I feel like I can say what I feel rather than if I were talking to my parents - I wouldn’t open up as much or say as much and say exactly how I feel to them because I would feel a bit embarrassed to tell them.”
Sarah Gray, Executive Director of YouMatter, talks about the benefits of being a member of acet UK's Esteem network: "We really value being members of the Esteem network as we have at our fingertips a range of high-quality, tried and tested resources to use in our workshops. We also have access to an enriching training programme, support from Esteem’s knowledgeable team and are part of a network of like-minded professionals working to support young people. Our Educators have all taken part in the Esteem training which was second to none. Gareth took great care to tailor it, making it bespoke for our unique laws in Jersey and providing us with relevant local information and data. I was extremely impressed and the team found it very useful.”