Why am I doing this?

Today as part of my college course myself and a group of my peers were required to visit two youth work projects in Dublin’s inner city. This visit was a real eye opener for me, as I have never really worker with young people who are from disadvantaged backgrounds or in a youth club setting.  On the bus home after todays visits I found myself asking many questions about what does youth work really mean to me and what does working with young people give me.

Well first of working with young people to me is encouraging and motivating them to engage in things they enjoy. It means working with them rather than for them to help improve their lives in some shape, way or form. It means I have to respect them in order for them to respect me and finally working with young people means helping bring about social change in a positive way to help young people learn the necessary skills to improve their lives, reach their full potential and help those around them too.

Youth work gives me more than you can imagine. It gives me experience, a sense of achievement and all the other common things, which working with young people gives you but it gives me more. Working with young people gives me inspiration, it gives me the motivation to go out into the world, go to college and live my life. Working with young people gives me a purpose in life; it allows me to explore my own values and beliefs whilst it also opens me up to new experiences, cultures and ways of life. Working with young people allows me to be myself and allows me to help those who need or want it, working with young people is what I want to do with my life. I want to work with young people because the young people in scouts and athletics, which I work with, give me a reason to get out of the bed in the mornings and they give me a reason to live!

While I have been thinking about whether college is right for me and if I will be able to keep up the work without myself becoming run down and down within myself today has really helped me put things into perspective. Today allowed me time to reflect but it also allowed me to see some of the opportunities, which are waiting for me. It allowed me to gain an insight into some of the work that is done with young people from disadvantaged areas but most of all it reignited a flame within me telling me that this is what I want to do and this is right for me and most of all this is what I need to do with my life, community and youth work is what I have been put on this earth to do!

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