What Do We Mean by Youth Work

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what do we mean by youth work? The following is a summary of Bernard Davies chapter on what do we mean by youth work. It would be hard to define youth work in a few words the fundamental meaning is working with young people, but what that entails will be different for every youth worker the variety of settings and situations they encounter. A definition of the purpose of youth work is to work with young people to facilitate their personal, social and educational development, help them gain a voice and encourage integration into wider society. Sapin (2009) states that youth workers should encourage and support their social development as they grow from children to adults, they are apprentice adults and the youth worker is the trainer teaching them the skills needed to become qualified adults. The fact that young people choose to be involved is paramount as Davis (2010:2) points out For most of its history, youth work has based its practice on the assumption that young people would choose to take part. It’s very practical justification has been that young people involved by choice are much likely to own whatever gains they take away from their youth work experiences. Because the young people choose to be involved as Davis (2005) explains they have considerable control over how or if the youth work partnership they have built up continues. 1 The relationship youth workers build with young people is one of mutual respect and trust this enables them to be more open and honest with each other which will help with situations when they arise. This shared respect is needed for setting boundaries and challenging them to move their starting goals, give them confidence to aim higher and achieve new things. As reported (Hogg, 2005) in the Independent ‘Youth workers can transform difficult teenagers into purposeful young people teaching new skills’ The
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