World YMCA Spotlight’s Paisley for International Day of Education

Paisley YMCA’s innovative work in delivering digital youthwork programmes has been spotlighted by World YMCA for 2021’s International Education Day (25 January) in an article for the World YMCA website.

The article also showcases the work of STEM Girls, which provides for young women the chance to overcome the impact of the unfortunate gender stereotypes which hinder the digital world.

Digital Youth Work Explained

SWGfL (South West Grid for Learning) which is a “charity dedicated to empowering the safe and secure use of technology through innovative services, tools, content and policy, nationally and globally” has published a podcast interview with Hilary Phillips from YouthLink Scotland.

The interview “delve[s] into digital youth work, the digital divide, and challenges for young people and youth workers engaging online”.

This podcast about ‘Digital Youth Work’ references the work of Paisley YMCA a couple of times, and it’s a good place to start in understanding what’s meant by ‘digital youth work’.

The references to Paisley YMCA are a result of the pioneering work by our community learning and development team which has established the Renfrewshire Digital Academy, led by Darran Gillan, our Youth and Programme Development Manager.

The podcast also references the digital youth work resource hub, created by YouthLink Scotland with support from key
partners.

Join Us – we’re seeking new members

Paisley YMCA has seen in recent years a reduction in our membership to the extent that all our members are on the Board of Management, but this is changing for 2021 – we’re looking for new members to join us

At it’s heart, Paisley YMCA, like all YMCAs, is about fellowship of like-minded people who share the Christian values of:

  • treating other people the way we’d like to be treated ourselves (‘do unto others as you would be done by’ is the Christian ‘Golden Rule’); and
  • supporting other people regardless of their personal characteristics, be that race or ethnicity, religious belief or lack of it, sex or gender, sexuality, disability or age, or whatever spurious grounds for discrimination might be applied elsewhere (as exemplified by the ‘Good Samaritan’ parable in which a Philistine in trouble was helped by a Samaritan despite a situation of war between the two tribes).

And we recognise that these essential Christian values are shared by people with other religious beliefs and by people with no religious beliefs. Our fellowship is based on values not belief.

Our constitution commits us to other ways of expressing aspects of these values, like the Community Learning and Development values of:

  • self-determination – respecting the individual and valuing the right of people to make their own choices.
  • inclusion – valuing equality of both opportunity and outcome, and challenging discriminatory practice.
  • empowerment – increasing the ability of individuals and groups to influence issues that affect them and their communities through individual and/ or collective action.
  • working collaboratively – maximising collaborative working relationships in partnerships between the many agencies which contribute to CLD, including collaborative work with participants, learners and communities.
  • promotion of learning as a lifelong activity – ensuring that individuals are aware of a range of learning opportunities and are able to access relevant options at any stage of their life.

Another way of expressing our values is that what we want for the young poeple we work with is for them to achieve Scotland’s National Youth Work Outcomes – that young people:

  • are confident, resilient and optimistic for the future;
  • manage personal, social and formal relationships;
  • create, describe and apply their learning and skills;
  • participate safely and effectively in groups;
  • consider risk, make reasoned decisions and take control;
  • express their voice and demonstrate social commitment; and
  • broaden their perspectives through new experiences and thinking

If you share our values and you care about supporting young people to develop character and skills, we’d like you to think about joining us. It’ll cost you nothing but a little bit of time and interest 🙂