From education to employment

YMCA Trinity’s new-found confidence after partnering with Itec Skills and Employment

Charity YMCA Trinity (@YMCATrinity), which helps young people across three counties to reach their full potential, has praised training provider Itec Skills and Employment for bringing newfound confidence to their team at an incredibly challenging time.

YMCA Trinity, part of a federation of over 116 YMCAs across England and Wales, works to create supportive, inclusive and transforming communities for young people in Suffolk, Cambridgeshire and Peterborough. This includes providing secure accommodation, early education for preschoolers, gym access, and mental health services.

In September 2020, between two national lockdowns, YMCA Trinity started working with training provider Itec Skills and Employment, who provide skills and employment services across England and Wales, including vital soft skills training for modern organisations. During this uncertain time, YMCA Trinity faced enormous challenges. The young people who they support, many of whom were badly affected by the pandemic, needed to be well informed on government guidelines surrounding social distancing as well as regular mental health check-ups.

Despite these huge challenges and the growing workload at YMCA Trinity, team leaders in the accommodation team, who support young people to get into secure housing, signed up for the programme, alongside 6 other YMCAS and thrived. The constant support of facilitators and Itec’s Management Mentors allowed the cohort to succeed without being overloaded with work.

On completion of the course, managers said that their self-assurance had grown enormously during their time on the programme and as a result of what they learned. They agreed that understanding the theory behind the practice gave them confidence in their practical skills and the ability to explain their decisions in a more elaborative way.

One of the team leaders has now taken on new responsibilities due to her involvement with the programme and is flourishing in her new and expanded role. Another team leader has been empowered by her manager to express her creativity, by constantly coming up with fresh ideas to digitalise the YMCA’s work and to encourage co-production with residents. A third participant has also gone from strength to strength and has recently taken over as Safeguarding Lead in his department.

All three team leaders have been praised by their co-workers for their increase in knowledge, capability, and leadership. Due to their involvement with the programme, YMCA Trinity has now purposefully altered the organisation’s culture to emphasise the value of professional development by creating policies that will ensure that team members going through promotion have the foundational knowledge and theory to lead confidently.

Lucy Watling, Organisational Quality and Development Manager at YMCA Trinity said:

“The managers who took part in the training had an overwhelmingly positive experience.

“The communication from Itec Skills and Employment compared to other training providers has been excellent throughout, and we hope the relationship goes from strength to strength.

“We fully anticipate that we will continue to work with Itec Skills and Employment in future.”

YMCA is the oldest and largest youth charity in the world. In England and Wales, they support 572,000 young people every year.

James Pearson, Director at Itec Skills and Employment, said:

“We’re very pleased to have made such a big difference to YMCA Trinity at such a difficult time.

“The organisation does fantastic work helping young people, and we’re grateful for how their team approached the training. We have been able to give that team the tools they need to thrive in their roles and keep doing fantastic work with creativity, energy and confidence.

“We hope this is the start of a long and fruitful partnership.”

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