AXIS YOUTH HUB
Axis Youth Hub is the result of a successful, 'Help Through Crisis' bid put forward by Wyre Forest Nightstop and Mediation in partnership with Kidderminster & District Youth Trust, (KDYT), North Worcestershire Basement Project and Our Way Self Advocacy to the Big Lottery Fund.
Axis delivers a centralised youth hub that will provide holistic support to young people (up to the age of 25) in crisis, by providing a one stop shop for young people to access a range of support available at one point and via a youth bus across the North of Worcestershire. This will enable services to outreach to young people in more isolated communities. Evidence gathered by the organisations that form Axis show that many young people who approach for help often have multiple issues and these are:
- homelessness or threat of homelessness
- breakdown of family relationships
- mental health
- substance and alcohol misuse
- sexual health
- problems accessing education and employment
Currently young people in crisis in North Worcestershire have to access support through a range of agencies and at multiple locations. Lack of confidence, ability to get to services and the fact that they also face multiple assessments to obtain services means that many young people do not access services when they need to. Therefore the Axis Youth Hub will bring a wide range of statutory, voluntary and private organisations together to provide the services in one location, based at the Kidderminster Youth Centre.
The centre is a well established location for youth services and is located in Kidderminster Town Centre, within close proximity of key services such as the Hub, Job Centre, Foyer, colleges and schools. It is also easily accessible by public transport. However, due to the semi rural nature of North Worcestershire, it is proposed that detached youth work is undertaken through sessional youth work out in the communities. The use of the youth bus, hub and access to a wide range of organisations means that the intention is to reach and help as many young people as possible regardless of cultural or religious backgrounds and the complexity of their situation.
At the point of access to the service, a young person will have an assessment undertaken and an action plan. The support worker will then help the young person address their requirements through linking them into the various services.
The services that will be offered include:
Advice, advocacy and floating support: this will be offered by services such as CAB, Wyre Forest District Council, Our Way Self Advocacy and the Basement Project. The services will offer advice surgeries on benefits, housing, education, employment, money management / debt counselling, tenancy sustainment and support to develop support networks. DV.
Mediation: Family mediation will be offered by Wyre Forest Nightstop and Mediation in partnership with other agencies such as the Basement and KDYT who have trained mediators.
Accommodation: Depending on the young persons circumstances, work will be undertaken to offer emergency accommodation or longer term accommodation through Nightstop, St Basils (the Foyer), Worcestershire County Council Childrens services, Wyre Forest District Council (WFDC) and various housing associations. Part of the bid is to help Nightstop develop an emergency accommodation via a crash pad at Nightstop House which is a project staffed and accessible 24/7. This will be accessible where a normal Nightstop arrangement is not appropriate and there is no alternative accommodation immediately available. Longer term services will include access to the WFDC private rented scheme, the foyer and social housing.
Health: Sessional work will be offered by the community mental health team and midwife teams. Youth work can also be undertaken by Kidderminster and District Youth Trust with partner agencies around subjects such as substance misuse and sexual health.
Employment and Education: Advice surgeries will be offered by Engage. The job centre has also agreed to work closely with the hub to enable a smooth process for young people accessing education and employment. Detached youth work will be undertaken by KDYT, Nightstop and the Basement in schools and colleges. Peer mentoring and volunteering opportunities will also be offered by the partners within Axis and there can be financial support (such as for the purchase of basic equipment) for young people to access employment.