We work with ~ 4,000 young people a year, of whom 500 face multiple disadvantages including rurality and poverty. Over 200 receive specialist long term support from the charity to face learning and/or physical disabilities, behavioural challenges, mental ill health and other issues associated with Adverse Childhood Experiences.
We support children and young people on a Journey of Change through a range of adaptable programmes that are designed to meet identified needs. We use our outdoor environment, 60 acres of heathland, woodland and flooded quarries to enable them to identify their own social, emotional and physical barriers and to choose their own challenges which will support them to overcome these.
We use three elements: Trauma Informed Child Development, using Outdoor Education and Green Spaces and Youth Work. Research shows the importance of these approaches and we see the powerful impacts these have on those we support.
Our Social Impact Report shows the positive changes we help young people bring about in their lives. 100% of young people told us that we’ve helped them and that they’d recommend us to a friend. Each and every parent/referrer also said that we’d had a positive impact on their child/pupil. A recent breakthrough has come from Steph, one of the many who we support. This is her story:
Steph was referred to us having been out of school for 8 months. She suffered from high anxiety and would self-harm. She had experienced lots of trauma with the death of a close friend, had a turbulent home life and suffered from alopecia through stress. When she joined us, she engaged well in the activities, learning to recognise her achievements. She also made a friend who she maintained contact with. When we followed up 6 weeks after the sessions, she had returned to mainstream school. Her hair has also begun to grow back. Steph said she learned that “I’m more confident than I think I am.”
Cornwall has a strong need for our work. It is one of the poorest counties in the UK, with 30k people living in poverty. Its NEET (not in education, employment or training) population is above England’s average for 16-17 year olds and has been growing. There is a strong relationship between poverty, child abuse and neglect, as cited by the Joseph Rowntree Foundation. It’s our mission to support all children and young people so they can achieve better life outcomes and reverse the impact of poverty.