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To ask how young people spend their time

(23 Posts)
Florene Tue 06-Oct-15 17:30:03

I need to come up with new ways to interact with young people from different communities, as part of a youth engagement project I am working on at the moment.

I don't have children in the right age range myself (13-19 years), and so whilst I have an idea on obvious things like Facebook etc, I could do with knowing a bit more about what exactly teens want to get up to, where do they like to hang out, both online and in real life etc. Do they still hang around parks like when I was a yoof, or is it all cyber communities now??

I had to queue behind around 20 kids at a mobile phone accessory shop the other day, so perhaps this is a popular meeting spot??

Any help or advice from weary parents of teens appreciated..

Sallyhasleftthebuilding Tue 06-Oct-15 17:33:21

DD goes to the park, beach, town, likes coffee shop and pancake place, sometimes swimming or sports hall.
They sometimes go to the skate park.

BetLynchsBeehive Tue 06-Oct-15 17:36:36

One half seem to have their own YouTube channels.

Florene Tue 06-Oct-15 17:37:02

Thanks for that Sally, skate park is one I'd not considered.

I'm also interested in what maybe the more troubled teenagers get up to, whether acceptable behaviour or not, as I need to make sure that this demographic is reached out to also. So if anyone has any experience in this area it would be appreciated.

Weathergames Tue 06-Oct-15 17:37:43

Nandos, and Sprinkles.

Weathergames Tue 06-Oct-15 17:38:40

PM me if you want I run a counselling service and a sexual health centre for teenagers.

Florene Tue 06-Oct-15 17:39:07

Thanks Bet, I was wondering about YouTube and whether this was still popular... tries not to sound 105

Florene Tue 06-Oct-15 17:40:33

Weather games - perfect, I hadn't considered either of those options. Will pm you.

Maryz Tue 06-Oct-15 17:49:08

McDonalds and the local chinese takeaway. Not inside, you understand, but outside.

Also, if you want to interact with teenage boys you will find any number of them on the local football pitches, and in the winter at the all-weather pitches. ime girls are more likely to be inside somewhere.

The difficulty you have with troubled teenagers is that they won't be hanging around where you can see them. The ones who are drinking young, or smoking dope (or worse) will be out of sight. They won't have money to spare on food, they will be very wary of (and probably known to) the local police. Here those are the kids who will be up at the canal, or in the woods.

The best way to meet teenagers is to give them something free. Free food or free condoms, it doesn't matter, but if you want to get to talk to them you could try that.

But as I say, the ones who need help are the ones less likely to trust adults, and the least likely to accept any help at all sad

Florene Tue 06-Oct-15 17:57:39

The McDonald's and Nandos suggestions are quite useful. Not sure we could get away with giving away food but we could maybe do something with the chains in terms of sponsorship/open days?

Free condoms/access to sexual health care sounds like a good idea.

Sallyhasleftthebuilding Tue 06-Oct-15 18:14:02

Not been, but there is a bike track, they offer free bike mechanics ... repair training type thing .plus friendly races. its sponsored by maccy Ds!

Spartans Tue 06-Oct-15 18:20:04

You need to get involved with something 'organised'.

You can't really just go to up to a loads of kids and ask if they are troubled or try and get in with them.

Dd spends her free time at our dojo or doing homework (so she can go to the dojo). Our dojo has quite a lot of troubled teens. The owners are excellent at working with kids who are bullies, in gangs etc as well as one with anxiety and have been victims of bullying and crime.

It's a great mix of people from all walks of life, all mixing together and making our own community.

The owners have often gone out and retrieved their students from dangerous places when they have run off or go round and have a word of they have been in trouble. They are really dedicated to the kids.

sproketmx Tue 06-Oct-15 18:22:26

Round here they all used to go down the bing riding motocross but that's been shit so they go on this bit of disused wasteland now. Or hand around up the shop. Our community centre used to do blue light discos on a Friday night so by blue light it means no alcohol served and they're marked with uv pens to get in but the council in their genius shit the centre down

SuburbanRhonda Tue 06-Oct-15 18:24:59

Ten of them were round mine this afternoon until I got home from work grin

Florene Tue 06-Oct-15 18:26:21

Perfect Rhonda, pm me your address and I'll pop by tomorrow grin

Maryz Tue 06-Oct-15 18:27:16

We have lots here too. They appear, eat and disappear again.

But not the troubled ones. They stay hidden.

Florene Tue 06-Oct-15 18:27:56

Disused waste ground also another good idea, thanks Sproket!

looks out sturdy boots for uneven walking surfaces

Sallyhasleftthebuilding Tue 06-Oct-15 18:29:35

... Bacon is the key ...

Your council must be full of shit then Sproke grin

SuburbanRhonda Tue 06-Oct-15 18:33:05

Sorry, OP, they don't talk to oldies (anyone over the age of 30) smile

junebirthdaygirl Tue 06-Oct-15 18:33:43

Is their any youth drop in centres or youth clubs nearby?

Sparklingbrook Tue 06-Oct-15 18:37:52

DS1 (16) can be mainly found on a football pitch, at his P/T job, 6th Form Common Room, or Costa, Nando's, or queuing in Subway/Dominoes.

DS2 (13) down at the local leisure centre on the astroturf, or the playing fields. Cinema/Nandos/Subway.

ohtheholidays Tue 06-Oct-15 22:14:50

Troubled teenagers,hanging around outside shops asking people if they're buy they're cigarettes,alcohol for them.Hanging around with they're friends outside sometimes till the early hours of the morning even in the freezing cold.

Unfortunatly alot of teenagers that have alot going on at home/school ect are an easy target for drug dealers,pimps,shoplifters(the kind that steal to order)because to start with they'll show an interest in the child,they'll buy them stuff,food,cigarettes,give them alcohol,let them stay at they're house and then once they've gained they're trust that's when the child gets pulled into a lifestyle that's really hard to get themselves out of.

Alot of teenagers that have all this going on self harm,it can be cutting themselves,scratching,pulling they're hair out,it can also show it's self as an eating disorder.More and more now you'll get teenagers especially boys becoming involved in illegal fights for money as well.With alot of the girls you'll find they're having sex or sexual experiences at a much younger age than is right for them.For the majority of alot of these girls the physical experience is seen as them being loved and beeing wanted by someone and for some of them it could sadly be the first time they've ever felt that way.

It's they're way off dealing with what's happened/is happening to them,it's they're release.For them it feels so much easier than actually talking to someone,than admitting what's happened to them because lots of them think that once they admit it,once they let someone in that's it they've lost all power and more than anything these kids need to feel empowered,they need to feel like they're in charge over something in they're lifes probably for the first time ever.

I've seen this with some of our oldest DC friends DS19 and DS17 were lucky our children are really good and they all always look out for they're friends and other children around them.We've helped quite a few of they're friends over the years and still are right now.

GlitteryShoes Tue 06-Oct-15 22:28:42

Speak to your local PCSOs and Fire Station. They will have insight and may already run youth engagement stuff. Also, if you have events planned approach schools to advertise them. Our local sexual health service does pamper parties at the local schools and they are very well attended.

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