Belfast Youth Initiatives
00:02 OK, my name’s Vinty F. I am a project co-coordinator and I work for Youth Initiatives.
00:09 It involves many things. I co-ordinate the young, young men’s project and there’s different elements to that.
00:17 I wouldn’t say it’s, it’s hard, it’s challenging because you’re working with people, you know, people have issues, young people have issues and it can be challenging that way in, in regards to helping young people overcome difficulties in their lives.
00:34 I grew up in this area where I work and I grew up through Youth Initiatives and I volunteered heavily during my time at Youth Initiatives and I did HND in performing arts. While I was volunteering I did a gap year then with Youth Initiatives and from then I interviewed for a, for a young men’s worker post. That’s how I became a, a staff worker within Youth Initiatives.
01:03 I began to finish volunteering in Youth Initiatives and I was at a real point of confusion, didn’t know what direction to go in and during that period a youth worker called to my house, about once every other week and just sat and talked about what was going on, you know, what are your plans, how are you and helped me decide where to go with, with my life, what paths to take and I think that was a real turning point for me, having someone who supported you. If it, if it wasn’t for this place, I would have been a completely different person, the sorts of issues going on back when I was growing up are quite similar to now, you know, there was a lot of drug-taking, joyriding or antisocial behaviour if you want to put it in, in that context and it would have been quite easy to fall into that. But the two things that helped me stay away from that were the, were definitely Youth Initiatives and growing up in, in this environment and my family as well, were a strong influence in my life, sort of guiding me and helping me and being strict with me when, when they needed to be, you know.
02:20 Well I don’t know my father, but my mum is a, a mediator, who, so she works with different parts of the communities that are facing difficulties and sort of, sort of tries to mediate and help the parties solve their, their issues and, and their problems. There’s definitely a role that a father plays, just because of the person my father was, I think it would have been, would, would have been at more of a disadvantage if he had have been around.
02:55 Really I’m, personally I’m not motivated by money. I think obviously you need money to be able to survive, to be able to live and to pay your bills and all that sort of stuff but it’s really, for me it’s about being able to help young people develop themselves and have a real passion for that, but the downside of the job is that you don’t have contracts for, for life, you don’t have contracts for ten years, they’re short term contracts. My contract at the moment is for three years. You know, we rely heavily, on funding from other agencies and funding providers, so if the funding’s not available, to employ me in this area, then I’ll have to move on to a, another place, you know.
Vinty F is a project co-coordinator for Youth Initiatives in Belfast. He says “I was at a real point of confusion, didn’t know what direction to go in and during that period a youth worker called to my house and helped me decide where to go with my life, what paths to take and I think that was a real turning point for me, having someone who supported you. If it wasn’t for this place, I would have been a completely different person”.
More information about Youth and community workers
The UK average salary is £28,758
There are 37.5 hours in the average working week
The UK workforce is 47% female and 53% male
- Organises social, recreational and educational activities in local community and youth groups;
- Undertakes the day-to-day running of community centres and supervises the activities of part-time and voluntary workers;
- Liaises and supports voluntary workers running groups in village halls, churches, mosques and other places of worship;
- Advises individuals with particular needs or problems through informal discussion, individual counselling or formal group discussion;
- Helps set up credit unions, encourages parents to establish playgroups, works with other groups to find solutions to shared concerns or problems.
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