Grace shares her experiences of accessing job centre services

‘It’s embarrassing going to the job centre. They need to pay more attention to the details and listen to what young people have to say. I’m a qualified beautician and they keep trying to send me on work experience. It’s rude’ – Grace, 23, a resident at YMCA Birmingham. It was in January this year…

Chloe explains the difficulties of training and being on Jobseeker’s Allowance

Chloe was just three days away from completing her carer’s training course when the news struck: her job centre benefits were about to be cut. Chloe’s course had exceeded the 16 hours per week permitted for training by the job centre, which meant she was left with two choices. Should could either remain on the…

Young person Sam Lee talks about proposed Housing Benefit changes

Sam Lee, from Cleethorpes, North East Lincolnshire, is an example of the type of young person who could in the future be affected if Housing Benefit was removed in full for all 18 to 21-year-olds. Currently unemployed and looking for an Apprenticeship, he admits that Housing Benefit cuts could have left him on the streets…

Jodie Clay from North London YMCA

Jodie Clay inspired to vote as the Election draws near

Jodie Clay first became homeless two years ago after a relationship breakdown.

Aged just 22 at the time, she was forced to move out of her home, quit her job and begin sofa surfing with friends and relatives as she strived to make a fresh start.


Zubairi, 17, YMCA Black Country

Zubairi became homeless after his mother could no longer afford their home. Determined to succeed, he is working very hard in college to become an Aerospace Engineer.


Marianne, 19, YMCA Bolton

Marianne was only 16 when she started suffering from depression. She was helping her mum care for her gran who had dementia. She wasn’t getting out much and had no one to talk to. But when a friend invited her to the Youth Club at YMCA Bolton, she found the friends and support she needed to feel happy again.


Lauren, 16, YMCA Bristol

Before starting her job with the YMCA, Lauren, 16, lacked confidence and was very shy. She was bullied at school and had a poor relationship with her family. She wanted to leave school but couldn’t get a job, until the YMCA offered her work at one of their cafés.


Johnny, 19, YMCA Mendip

Johnny experienced a family tragedy and was having difficulties getting on with his dad when he first came to YMCA. He was feeling low and his life lacked direction. YMCA gave him friends, activities and opportunities to rebuild his life.