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Ullapool Youth Work selected as finalist for prestigious national award

By Iona M.J. MacDonald

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The Ullapool Youth Space. Picture: YouthLink Scotland.
The Ullapool Youth Space. Picture: YouthLink Scotland.

Ullapool’s High Life Highland youth work has been selected as a finalist for the National Youth Work Awards, recognising their impact on the lives of young people in the area.

They have been nominated in the Community-based Youth Work Award category, following the highly-successful revival of the Ullapool Youth Space on Market Street.

The space has become a hub for young people from Ullapool and surrounding areas.

Pupils at Ullapool High School come from a large area across Wester Ross and Sutherland, with some travelling up to 40 miles every day to get to school.

It can prove difficult for the pupils to spend time together outside of school time due to being from such a vast and rural area.

However the Late Bus is the key for giving the youngsters the opportunity to spend time at the youth space to relax, have fun, feel supported and spend time with friends. The youth space also gives young people the opportunity to reach a youth worker at almost any time.

From fun lunchtime meetings to exciting holiday events, the youth space is full of life, bringing young people together in a rural community.

Youth Work in Ullapool proves that it takes a whole community to support young people – and that’s exactly what this community have done. The revival of Ullapool’s Youth Space is a big success story. With help from the youth committee and Ullapool and District Youth Group, it’s become a hub for local young people.

The awards will take place on June 12 in Glasgow, hosted by Celebrity Big Brother winner, John Loughton.

Tim Frew, chief executive of YouthLink Scotland, said: "With the cost of living crisis intensifying and more young people encountering obstacles in education and employment, youth workers stand out as the true changemakers. Their invaluable contributions to the lives of countless young people deserve recognition, as they are the unsung heroes strengthening our communities."

Mike Strang, Youth Scotland chief executive said: "Despite the ongoing challenges our sector is facing, youth work continues to foster resilience and focus on the needs of our young people. Youth groups continue to build strong relationships with local communities, pairing tried and tested methods of supporting children and young people with innovative new interventions.

“Youth work is a crucial component in Scotland, supporting young people to achieve their full potential and to help build a country which values youth work and its impact on young people’s lives."

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