What is Brighton Youth Centre? The Brighton Youth Centre (BYC) is a hub with lots of exciting activities for 5 to 19 year olds, focusing more with the 13 to 19 year old age range. The centre is a registered charity offering support and advice to young people.
When I first started coming the BYC I found it a bit overwhelming, this was because it was a much busier environment to the place that I am usually based which is the Young People’s Centre. Furthermore the environment at BYC was also quite noisy and sometimes I struggle with noisy places. However having gone there now since January I have managed to equip and get used to the BYC environment and I now really enjoy going there. Going to BYC also allows me to interact with a variety of young people and for me to do lots of tweeting about what is going on at the youth centre that week.
BYC is a very active place with a number of sessions and groups taking place throughout the week. Some of these include, the Youth Session from 7 till 9 on Tuesday and Wednesdays, the Art sessions, the skate sessions and BYC’s yearly festival B.fest.
B.fest is a youth Arts festival run by a team of 13 to 19 year olds, who help to make decisions about what goes on during the festival including what the festival will hold during the course of the week and what the flyers and the programs will look like. The festival has been running for the last 6 years during the May half term holiday. It has proved incredibly popular with lots of young people both members and non-members of BYC attending. This year I attended the week, seeing some of what was going on and publicising it on social media. Attending this event was really knowledgeable for me because it allowed me to learn so much more about youth work and why having this festival was so important to the young people at BYC. If you want to see what it is about check out these videos of B.fest from previous years? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7j7JvMzFK6g
Some of the workshops and sessions that went on included a launch event and a Drag Workshop which allowed the young people to come up with their own character including costume, make up and a name as well as a performance.
With going to BYC every Wednesday evening I went along to the B.fest board meetings which were run every Wednesday during the youth session. At these meetings I helped to promote the week and some of the events that would be running as part of B.fest.
There are also a number of organisations using some of the space at BYC some of these include AudioActive, Amazonas Arts teaching Capoeira to the young people, Fresh St.Art and the Windmill Young Actors. Having these organisations renting out space allows the young people to have choice over what they wish to do at BYC. This also has allowed me to learn more about what each session is about, its purpose and why it is important.
I found some of these sessions really interesting especially the Amazonas Arts Capoeira sessions. This was because I had never seen Capoeira and didn’t know what it was or what it involved as a martial Art. Going along to this session allowed me to learn more about the martial Art and to take photos and publicise it on social media.
BYC themselves also hold lots of groups and sessions such as the Art sessions, skateboarding, table tennis, Karate and the gaming group. The gaming group is a group of young people who are interested in any sort of game for example a board game or a video game. Having these groups allows me to learn that at BYC there is something for everyone and you don’t necessarily have to be registered with the youth club to join in with the sessions and groups. As a young person you are able to drop in for a one off session if you wish. Seeing some of these activities and events in action for the first time gave me an idea of what goes on at BYC and how it impacts the young people.
Going to BYC has taught me that it is more than just a youth centre, it is a community. The young people that attend the Youth Centre look up to the staff members and trust them. It is one of the places to go if a young person needs advice and support with personal situations and problems. Coming to BYC on Wednesday evenings also gives me a better understanding of how much this place means to the young people that attend and how the youth centre impacts them socially, emotionally, intellectually and physically. If you want to find out more about Brighton Youth Centre (BYC), what they do and some of the sessions and activities that they run then visit: http://www.brightonyouthcentre.org.uk/