Sidewalk-Scarborough is a youth-led movement for change. Just as it takes a village to raise the young, we believe it takes young people to raise a village! For 28 years we have focussed on engaging with Scarborough’s most marginalized and at-risk young people on the streets, to draw alongside them and nurture conditions in which they can develop in all areas of life. Sidewalk-Scarborough is currently headed up by Steve Blower along with our amazing team of sessional workers and volunteers. We have 3 primary aims:
Support young people experiencing marginalization to overcome life’s challenges
- Foster informal education opportunities through trusting relationships
- Connect young people with the community resources they need
- Increase emotional intelligence and resilience
- Create a nurturing environment for young people to build confidence & competence
Resource young people to achieve their goals and positively impact the community
- Coach and train young people to achieve their aims
- Support young people to access the training and resources needed to achieve their goals
- Challenge and remove barriers to young people’s success; personally, locally and nationally
Improve the conditions for youth participation in community life
- Connect the community needs with the resources of young people
- Promote the voice of young people in the community
- Share the positive stories surrounding the impact of youth-led action for change
- Demonstrate youth-led action in the community
- Develop a volunteer program
What we do:
Detached Street-based youthwork
Twice a week we go out and meet with young people where they’re at. For 28 years, marginalized young people have connected with Sidewalk on the streets of Scarborough where we develop mutuality, openness, and trust. It is here where we build positive relationships and engage in informal education with young people who are often disconnected from other services.
Supporting local schools’ most vulnerable young people aged 11-18 with around 20 uniquely tailored one-to-one sessions per week supporting them in the challenges they face and helping them take positive steps forward.
This is often a next-step for those we engage with through the street-based work and mentoring. Event planning groups, fitness groups, drop in groups – Group Work unleashes young people’s hopes, ideas, and talents on a community that needs them! “It’s the highlight of my week,” said a young person about one group she helps lead in the centre of Scarborough. Young people become ‘the difference they want to see’.
Volunteering and Youth Innovation
For those young people who want to further develop skills in a context tailored to their ideas and passions. The volunteer program ranges from lending a hand at youth groups to shaping the charity’s future on the management committee.
It’s important for Scarborough to connect with its young people. We encourage this by sharing young people’s stories and perspectives through news outlets and social media. We promote young voices, both critical and hopeful to connect them with local organisations who will champion them.
Detached youth work Mentoring Groupwork Volunteer Program Advocacy
What it means to be a faith-based organisation?
Sidewalk-Scarborough is a faith-based organisation that is founded on Christian values. Our vision is one of compassion, justice and fulfilment for all people regardless of ethnicity, culture, religion or sexuality. This vision is inspired by the life of Jesus and we seek to live this out in practical ways.
Our goal is never to coerce or pressurise anyone, it is to support, learn, help and serve in any way we can. Sidewalk employs both ‘Christian’ and ‘non-Christian’ workers each with their own unique view of the world. We do not try to impose our worldview, whether secular or religious on anyone but instead seek to explore the common good and what it means to be human in the world today. The big questions of life are a central part of youth work and we encourage young people to be critically reflective on their journeys. We fully respect their right to make their own choices and develop their own views.
Where are we?
Currently based at:
Albemarle Baptist Church
You can get in touch via the contact page on this site!