August 24th, 2012


As a follow on from last weeks blog – the evaluation of the year –  we made some plans (aided by the book)! We especially concentrated on the environment we want to create in all the sessions we run for young people as mentioned in the blog a couple of weeks ago.

We felt that there are some key themes that run through this, here are 3:

Peace: Some of the young people we work with have very unpeaceful lives. Their home situation may not be peaceful, which can then lead to unpeaceful behaviour making life at school and beyond a constant battle. Not all young people experience this but most will experience this at some point. The streets of East London are sometimes not very peaceful places and most young people will be aware of this. It will affect them. They are continually watching their backs and aware of danger. We want Canaan Project sessions to be peaceful places. This has several practical applications, not fully explained here! This we hope will create a place of rest, relaxation and enjoyment.

Safety: Linked with peace, we would like young people to feel safe. We want the Canaan Project sessions to be a place that feel safe, not just from physical violence but safe emotionally too. This means they might be able to talk about how they feel or about the experiences they might have had, in a safe environment where they feel cared for, appreciated and listened too. Again some young people might not experience this anywhere else.

Holistic: We want to work with young people holistically, appreciating that sometimes they need food and shelter, sometimes they need listening too, sometimes they are emotional, sometimes they are intellectual, sometimes they want to learn, sometimes they want to think and learn about faith, sometimes they want to have fun and enjoy themselves, sometimes they don’t want anything.

There are many more, but this is a starting place to share with you some of our thought processes and our approach to working with young people.