Discovery College, YMCA Plymouth
Celebrating its 10th year, Discovery College has established itself as a successful and innovative post-16 College that has made a significant difference to the lives of over 1,200 young people in Plymouth. Growing from a small project of two courses, the College now delivers over seven vocational training courses and three employability programmes for 16-19s, each year. Additionally, the college supports over 50 local family’s a-week through a range of services delivered by its students.
The unique learning environment allows young people to have their voices heard, be inspired about their future and feel engaged with their community. This caring and supportive space particularly helps students who are disengaged from mainstream education or from disadvantaged backgrounds. Courses are delivered not only equip young people with essential qualifications, but also give them the life-skills they need to fulfil their potential and thrive in society.
This year, Discovery College has reached more young people than ever, and made its biggest impact on young lives. Students achieved their best ever exam results, launched a community orchard and introduced a new Travel & Tourism course. Equally, students have got involved with and made an impact on their community, by leading and supporting services at YMCA Plymouth.
Examples this year include:
- Employability students volunteering and fundraising for various community projects
- Soft Play service ran by Childcare students, impacting 30+ families a week.
- Community orchard designed, built and maintained by Business students for local people, and groups to use.
- Sports clubs and disability activities run by Sport and Public Services students benefiting 850+ people annually.
- Health & Social Care students delivered a Memory Cafe to support 25+ people affected by dementia and are trained to give mental health counselling to their peers.
- Travel & Tourism students working to organise trips for local deprived families.