Devon Mind is the largest young people’s charity in the Southwest. Their mission is to make Devon a better place for all young people. Each year they work with over 2,000 young people, building quality relationships to help them thrive. Devon Mind has integrated the entrepreneurship approach from SPEED-You-UP in a pilot that is run in collaboration with different local stakeholders.
The hub is located at Young Devon on Mutley Plain, where all sessions are delivered to a group of NEET’S aged 16-24. The NEETS are enrolled onto a Work Based Learning course with Young Devon, a 12-week course where they learn how to build a CV, interview skills, and begin their career planning.
Our hub aims to provide young people the confidence and self-belief to achieve their goals – this was achieved by ‘learning by doing’ activities. Th SYU vehicle helped young people to realise that success is driven by hard work, ‘having a go’ and determination. During the sessions the young people become more and more open minded and positive about their future.
The SYU course offers an exciting and unique offer of a young person-centred approach. The Young Devon SYU hub puts the young person in control of decisions. It is a safe environment to take risks and make mistakes. The model also encourages evaluation of mistakes and what could be done differently. It allows the young person to discover their own motivations and passions.
"We are proud of the impact that the programme has had on the individual young people we have worked with – watching them change and grow more confident.
It is great to see how the programme has a real impact on young people in Devon.
Donna (project lead) and Yasmin (project assistant) worked with a vulnerable group including a young individual who struggled with low self-belief and lack of confidence talking not only to a group, but also anyone they didn’t know well. During the first couple of sessions it was evident that this particular young person had a very low opinion of themselves and did not make eye contact, did not put forward their ideas and struggled to feel comfortable interacting as a group. However, through a series of confidence building activities, through the Talent and Skills SYU module and continuous nurturing support from the coaches they improved dramatically. During the last session they felt comfortable articulating an in-depth conversation with Donna, Yasmin, and the rest of the group, and also spoke more openly about their opinions, even though it was different to the rest of the group.
At present, there are no concrete pop-up enterprises that have come from the Devon Mind hub. In the future, the Young Devon hub will invest in wider promotion about the SYU project and its benefits and will continue to work with young people and stakeholders from the neighbourhood.