Spotlight on the young volunteers journey

Spotlight on the young volunteers journey


Over 250 people volunteer at Central YMCA Club, and they truly help to make it a special place. Our volunteers do everything from teaching exercise classes to performing gym inductions, assisting with YActive’s children’s holiday play scheme to working on our community programmes. Our Club just wouldn’t be the same without them!


Volunteering with YMCA Club is a great way to share your expertise, learn new skills and build new friendships. There are many benefits to volunteering, from knowing that you’re making a contribution to your local community, to enhancing your CV and job prospects and the positivity that comes from being part of something bigger.

“This gives me the opportunity to be the role model I wished to have when I was a child. It’s about giving people support and a foundation of knowledge, I like giving a helping hand” Anonymous young volunteer -16

YActive Children and Youth scheme works with a great number of young volunteers to give them a chance to make a real impact whilst learning and growing as individuals. Interestingly, many of them were children in the YActive programme before becoming volunteers.

“Volunteering is tiring but I do it anyway because it’s completely worth it. The people and staff are lovely and so kind, and spending time with kids feels great. Also the activities we do are really fun and something I wouldn’t do normally.” Angela 15


“I volunteer because I love the feeling of responsibility and being in charge of organiasing activities and games. Volunteering makes me use my initiative and has broadened my knowledge of how to act on job and act quickly.” Violet 15

This year four of our young volunteers were offered paid work in the Club: reception, playscheme pool-side, and fitness instructing (after successfully passed level 2 gym and RLSS lifeguard). Having gained skills in communication, collaboration, and delivery these young people are now job-ready. One particular member of the scheme, Jordan Akester, is a fantastic volunteering role-model.

Jordan Akester is 17 and this year has been offered his first Playwork scheme shifts during the holiday period. Jordan has been coming to YActive since he was 5, and volunteered as soon as he could at 13. Soon after joining the programme he was given the opportunity to support football sessions three times a week and during the holidays. He had this to say about his experience volunteering:

“I volunteered because I needed to build up my CV, it wasn’t really up to a high standard. [Volunteering here has] given me confidence, having responsibility and being the member of staff in charge has helped my confidence. I feel I’m valued by the team.” Jordan Akester

Over the past year, our volunteers have helped out with:

  • 2080 inductions
  • 3600 programme classes
  • 140 Crèche sessions
  • 1200 hours of therapy
  • And served over 6000 cups of tea!

If any young people of 13 years or over are interested in volunteering please contact Laura Walsh

ymca | 29 July 2015