Respect and Values
It is important that in order to meet the many and diverse needs of young people that youth providers work in a co-ordinated and seamless manner with an integrated pattern of service delivery. Integrated service delivery is at the heart of Elevated Aspirations Ltd.
In today’s current climate no service provider alone can meet all the needs of young people.
It is the recognition and potential use of the various skills, expertise and knowledge that partners, colleagues and other youth providers possess that is the driving force behind the Elevated Aspirations Ltd and school’s partnership.
Establishing the projects
Several meeting were arranged with Elevated Aspirations Ltd and Langdon School. The idea behind the meetings was to establish in what ways we could work together in order to address some of the schools concerns regarding young peoples lack of respect and values towards their peers.
Aims, objectives and outcomes
The project was aimed at enabling young people to understand the value of respect and encourage them to meet their full potential by providing workshops that support and identify key issues with underachievement and low aspirations.
In the short term the young people had an opportunity to look at what their definition of respect was and how their definition impacted on others.
These skills enabled young people to effectively navigate their way through the challenges society imposes on them. The project ran for a period of six weeks.
Achievement of core objectives
Alternative ways of expressing views and opinions
An identified problem of some of the young people was that of how to express themselves in a positive way that did not cause offence or irritation to their peers. An example was of one young person whom was known to self harm. At first the young women found it difficult to express herself because of what her peers would say - and with good reason. Several of the other girls in the group were mocking her because of the scars on her arms.
The Truce 20-20 session and the Expressive Art session challenged the group to look and their behaviour in terms of the lack of respect and lack of concern of their peers feelings. The group also discussed how words can be a powerful way of hurting people through a lack of respect and concern.
By the end of the 2 sessions many of the young people were expressing regret at their conduct towards the young girl and towards their peers. However, it is worth mentioning that the main antagonists where pulled aside to have a one to one discussion on the impact of their behaviour and the lack of respect that they had shown to the young girl in question.
Truce 20-20 ran a session on respect and value. This session concentrated on the impact of influence on young people and how it shapes their behaviour and respect towards each other.
Discussions were had on role models as an influence on young people and how this affected their respect for peers and adults. The startling discovery was that many of the young people were influenced by their parents and adult family members. This flew in the face of what many of the youth workers suspected – celebrities, singers, actors, sports stars etc.
These influences clearly had positive and negative impacts on the young people. Habits and behaviours were picked up from parents and family members. It is worthwhile mentioning that the group were of a young and impressionable age – 12 and 14.
By the end of the session young people were aware they that have free will and that ultimately they decide on their actions and control their thoughts. It is their ability to resist following the negative influences in their lives that they control.
Initial negative attitude towards the project
Their was clearly an attitude change in all of the young people. When they first started the project most the young people had an attitude of ‘Do we have to be here? And ‘do we have to do this’, ‘Do we have to talk’ and ‘Do we have to discuss this it’s boring’. By the end of the project there had been a complete turn around in these young people. They were willing to participate in every activity and discussion.
Attitude towards peer communication
All the young people had stated they had a different attitude to communicating with their peers. However, most felt that this would still be difficult when speaking to people who bully or intimidate them.
For peers that were not threatening or peers that they did not know the group felt that they had a more positive approach to communicating with these peers.
The most striking and consistent comments that came from the young people were that they had learnt to respect their peers more. This was further supported by statements that demonstrated that they had enjoyed socialising with other young people on the project.
The group also recognised that they could not always respect their peers. This is because their peers could, would and at times do things that would cause the group to either lose respect for them or do things that would make them lower their respect for their peers.
Improved peer communication
All the young people stated that they felt more confident to attempt to communicate with their peers. The outcome of this being that there will be better and more communication between their peers whether at home, school or when they are outside playing.
It is worth noting though that whilst the group felt more confident to converse or communicate with peers this was not extended to young people that were viewed as a threat to them.
Whilst at least three young people in the group were very confident from the outset the confidence in other members in the group had clearly increased. This was demonstrated in their behaviour at the beginning of the project how animated, lively and participative they were at the end of the project.
The best demonstration of the improvement of the group’s confidence was when they did their presentations to the different year groups. None of the young people were phased by having to stand in front of an audience of over 150 young people and teachers and speak about what they had learnt on the project over the 6 weeks.
Improved ability to forge peer relationships amongst young people
The one comment that all of the young people stated was that attending the sessions had improved their ability to communicate and socialise with their peers. Having to work closely together to achieve some of the tasks and having to peer assess had shown them how to better communicate and in turn provided an opportunity to get to know each other rather than just work on a piece of work with each other. However, the youth workers assisted this process of better communicating.
Please select a project to view
- Raising Aspirations and Achievement (click here)
- Building Resilience (click Here)
- Respect and Values (click here)
- Sing 4 Peace (click here)