Youth Work

About Us

Situated in the seaside resort of Torbay, the youth team at YMCA South Devon are able to offer alternative provision for children and young people from the local area. Working in close partnership with the local authority, schools and colleges, we cater for the Social, Emotional and Mental Health (SEMH) needs of young people who have faced challenges in the mainstream education environment.

YMCA South Deon are a Quality Assured Alternative Education Provider. (include the quality assurance tick). We are able to offer bespoke programmes of support depending on a young person’s particular background and work hard to ensure that our provision matches those needs. With highly qualified staff, we provide a comprehensive package of support in areas such as:

  • Attachment and trauma
  • Anxiety and grief
  • Social interaction
  • Healthy relationships
  • Re-integration
  • Academic tuition
  • Fitness and physical well-being
  • Post-16 transition
  • Our main site is a stone’s throw from the stunning South Devon coastline. We are privileged to have a facility that can boast:

  • A woodland area with log cabins for forest school activities
  • An indoor sports hall
  • An outside basketball court
  • A garden for growing vegetables and flowers
  • A specially designated youth annexe, with classroom, chill-out room and kitchen

  • Activities

    Our team of youth workers plan activities that match the needs of their young people. Activities range from academic support to fitness sessions. Staff complete weekly and daily plans with carefully chosen objectives, which are guided by long -term targets. Young people are offered the opportunity to be part of the planning stage and can feel part of the process from start to finish.

    As well as utilising the facilities at our Paignton centre, young people benefit from our proximity to local facilities such as Torbay Leisure Centre, community gyms, Paignton Zoo, and a plethora of local parks. With the stunning South Devon coastline and the rugged beauty of Dartmoor on our doorstep, opportunities to interact with and learn from the local environment are boundless.

    The Referral Process

    Making a referral to the youth team couldn’t be easier. Download our referral form here or contact us using the details below. If you would like to have an informal chat about our service and discuss what we can offer, please call Natalie.

    Once we have received a referral, one of the team will offer to make contact with parents or carers and introduce themselves.


    Referring agencies and organisations will receive weekly updates about progress, including young people’s feedback, successes and any concerns. Progress will be linked to objectives, which feed into long-term targets. Targets are set on a half-termly basis and are often linked directly to a young person’s EHCP if one is in place.

    In addition, half-termly reports are available. These summative reports contain feedback related directly to long-term targets, as well as quantifiable SEMH data.