A team of three Salmon staff carry out a detached programme in Bermondsey on Monday and Wednesday evenings (6:00pm-9:00pm). The work is first and foremost about engaging with young people with the intention of listening to needs and linking in with beneficial programmes or groups.
In talking to young people we look to raise the issues of social space and street violence in and around Bermondsey. Michael Whelan, one of the workers involved, is conducting research for Brunel University and is keen to have these conversations with young people. Using Google maps, young people will be able to jot down the areas they feel safe but, more importantly, areas they feel unsafe. The idea is based on an understanding that young people feel the need to carry knives for their protection as they live in fear of local surroundings and people.
The Detached programme is an ongoing piece of work where we hope to build on relationships and engage young people in activities on the street, such as sport and art, and give opportunities for group trips.
Salmon has a lot to offer to the local community of Bermondsey so it is important that we inform young people, families and other organisations of our services. We perform outreach in a number of creative ways:
- Engaging with young people on the streets through conversation and leaflets (carried out on Monday and Friday evenings at the start of our clubs).
- School and college enrichment days
- School assemblies
- Themed club evenings
- Special offers on clubs e.g. bring a friend and get in free
- Tent and activities at the Bermondsey Carnival
- Offering different activities to get more young people in, such as the Bike workshop
- Getting involved in events with other organisations
- Good contact with the local police and Tenants’ Associations
"Outreach is how Salmon engages with the community of Bermondsey to inform them of the facilities and opportunities we have on offer. By going into schools, being part of events and talking with young people on the streets, we are building strong relationships. The centre has so much to offer with passionate staff who are there to listen and guide young people in what they want to achieve. It is vital that people know about Salmon so we can connect with as many young people as possible."
Matt Perkins, Youth Worker Outreach