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Hailsham Youth Workers Boost Skillset During Lockdown
Hailsham Town Council’s youth workers are taking a proactive step to further improve their professional skills, whilst the Square Youth Cafe and other facilities managed by Hailsham youth Service continue to remain closed due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Hailsham Youth Service’s team of dedicated staff are now using the available time during lockdown to update their training and workplace qualifications by completing around 30 additional online courses including the following:
Adverse childhood experiences | Child protection | Safeguarding young people | Substance misuse risks | Food hygiene | First aid | Online safety | Mental wellbeing in children and young people | Bereavement and loneliness | Anti-bullying
“For many of us, it can feel like the ongoing pandemic has put everything on hold, but now is the time to for us to use the time to build our skillset even further,” said Youth Project Coordinator Andy Joyes. “Youth workers are a vital ingredient for quality youth-serving organisations, and professional development – by way of a variety of online courses – can enhance the skills of both new and more experienced members of our team.”

The temporary closure of Hailsham Youth Service, which manages the Square Youth Café, Friday Night Project and Monday Youth Club, as well support/advisory services such as SafeHub and Sexual Health, is part of a Town Council-wide measure to combat the spread of COVID-19, taking into account government advice to avoid using communal spaces and encourage social distancing.

Nevertheless, during lockdown, the Town Council’s youth service team has ensured that young people can stay updated, join in on discussions, take part in activities and keep in touch with the youth worker team via social media, including their Facebook and new Instagram pages.
“Young people in Hailsham are encouraged to connect with discussions on how they are all managing whilst being socially isolated and take part in various online activities, including interactive challenges, quizzes, and recommendations on which films and TV programmes to watch and what games to play on their smartphones.
“Maintaining contact with young people and keeping them engaged with services during this difficult time is essential, especially with the recent closure of face-to-face services,” said Town Clerk John Harrison.
“Due to the COVID-19 situation and strict social distancing measures currently in place, there have been a lot of changes to young people’s living circumstances. Keeping young people updated on social media and in touch with youth workers are important and, on the Instagram page in particular, we are producing lighter content and activities to keep young people engaged.”
“I’m also delighted that the youth services team are proactively using the current downtime to further boost their skills and gain further important qualifications, in preparation for the eventual reopening of Hailsham Youth Service later this year.”
Mr Harrison added: “We’re proud of our services to the youth of Hailsham, and the youth workers’ positive attitude and willingness to continually develop their skills has ensured that Hailsham Youth Service has gone from strength to strength since its launch 20 years ago.”
"Due to recent lockdown restriction easing, it is hoped that the youth service will be able to resume detached work in the near future, any news of which will be announced accordingly.
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