Can detached youthwork be ‘asset based’ and develop young peoples gifts?

We’ll not speak to those young people – they’ve not got alcohol on them They appear to be ok, we’ll leave them alone I doubt if its them who are causing the anti social behaviour calls These are all phrases I have used on detached youthwork. Its that thing where you go out, of an evening, to try and talk with young people on the … Continue reading Can detached youthwork be ‘asset based’ and develop young peoples gifts?

Young people are just Bored? or 6 other reasons why young people are on the streets.

THEY’VE GOT NOTHING TO DO!  YOUNG PEOPLE ARE JUST BORED!!  So goes the common story about why young people might be on the streets. But, aside from those who do detached youthwork, might there be actually other reasons why young people might be there. Even in a much disputed small scale research by YFC recently revealed that a large % of young people liked being on … Continue reading Young people are just Bored? or 6 other reasons why young people are on the streets.

12 key advantages of starting and developing detached youthwork in a community

I usually set this exercise in the detached youthwork training that I do with groups, churches and college students – think about detached youthwork compared to ‘centre-based’ work – what advantages are there? Of course, there are disadvantages and I will acknowledge these in a following post. But for a start we should focus on its advantages. After all there must be some, otherwise we … Continue reading 12 key advantages of starting and developing detached youthwork in a community

When we meet young people – what do we say to them?

This is one of the most common questions people ask me about working with young people, especially young people who are encountered on the streets or public places. When I meet young people what do I say? And it is not just young people on the streets.  When we’re youthworkers in schools, churches, clubs and groups, the most essential aspect of it is the conversations … Continue reading When we meet young people – what do we say to them?

How spiritual are young people on the streets?

I have spent the evening putting together some slides for a training session I am leading tomorrow with a group of detached workers in Newcastle. One of the topics they would like me to cover is that of ‘developing spirituality with young people during street based work. A few years ago i posted the following article ‘The Street as a context for Theology -which was … Continue reading How spiritual are young people on the streets?

Do young people care about youthworkers? (probably not)

I wonder if it is a good premise to start from in youthwork, even youth ministry, even if its a painful realisation to come to. That young people dont care about youthworkers!  As youthworkers we might hope that young people actually like us, want to spend time with us, and we hope listen to what we might have to say. But fundamentally they dont actually care … Continue reading Do young people care about youthworkers? (probably not)

Detached youthwork: Having faith conversations on the streets.

Its one of the main criticisms levelled at detached youthwork from the ‘established’ christian community, or its youth worker contingency – ‘all that detached work is ‘good’ stuff, but when does it produce/become orientated around faith? ‘  and it is a valid question, it has to be a valid question as it gets asked often enough. Behind the question might be the drive that everything … Continue reading Detached youthwork: Having faith conversations on the streets.

For detached – why context matters

For 10 years now I’ve been involved in delivering detached youthwork in a number of settings, and not just city, rural and suburb, but also neutral space, community , school and college. For me the two key factors that enable quality conversations to happen are the following; A. The geographical distance from adults who control the space, and B. The  Aims and intentions of the … Continue reading For detached – why context matters

Theatrical Conversations on the streets

“Each conversation is like a small piece of theatre, and within it we acquire a role” (Wardhaugh 1985) “Theatre happens when someone offers something- word or deed-to another” (Vanhoozer, 2010:43) I have a small confession to make; over the last 3-4 years i have developed a routine when I train detached youthworkers, volunteers or students even, when it comes to thinking about detached youthwork, especially … Continue reading Theatrical Conversations on the streets

un- macdonaldising the church – learning from the context & streets

The title of this blog is about learning from the streets, and, as a detached youthworker the street, or the context of the street,  is such a key influence on the shape of the work of detached youthwork. In many ways the actions of the detached worker, or project are shaped around the movements, timings, gatherings of young people in any particular contexts, and its … Continue reading un- macdonaldising the church – learning from the context & streets