work with young people

As you scroll down this page you will see a range of courses that I have devised and run for Westminster Connexions, London Youth, Off Centre Hackney, Off The Record (Havant, Twickenham, Croydon) and a range of other services that serve young people. Each training event can be tailor made to meet the needs of counsellors and other practitioners within your service.


I am also able to offer bespoke training and consultancy that addresses the specific needs of your team and organisation.

This can include:

• Strategies for effective team work – team building, managing and responding to   conflict.

• Working with diversity and difference.

• Project and service reviews and evaluations.

• Interpersonal skills training that is designed to enhance practice.

• Project and service reviews.

• Supervision – to individuals and groups.

• Skill development for counsellors.

• Understanding the helping relationship – models, theory and concepts that can help.

• Transpersonal and ancient perspectives and theory on the therapeutic/helping relationship.

‘What difference does difference make? responding to cultural diversity & difference’.

‘We believe that diversity brings life, vibrancy and (literally) colour to human society. Diversity and difference can, however, create tension and mistrust and this is an issue for all humankind. All we can try to do is to accept that any form of social power that is based solely on difference….is anti-humanity and in the widest sense anti-sanity’. Kareem.

How would you describe your relationship to difference and the diversity of your colleagues and the young people you work with? What challenges and opportunities does working with diversity bring you? Would you like to find more creative strategies and confidence in engaging with difference? If so, this training event will introduce you to a range of perspectives on working with diversity from a range of world traditions. It will also provide you with opportunities for skills practice in this area.

This 2 day course will cover:

• Defining race, gender, sexuality, disability, culture, heritage, prejudice and oppression.

• Your philosophy, experience and value base in relation to working with diversity.

• Strategies for responding to your own and others prejudices and assumptions.

• Engaging young people in dialogue about diversity, prejudice and discrimination.

• Models of understanding internalised oppression.

• Developing your capacity to relate and working with diversity.

‘Making use of motivational interviewing & solution focussed strategies’

‘People are generally better persuaded by the reasons which they have themselves discovered than by those which have come into the minds of others’ Blaise Pascal

This experiential training event aims to explore solution focussed strategies and the concept of resilience in working with young people. By focussing on the resources and resilience of young people, the problem looses centre stage and the potential for the solution arises. If we combine this with a focus on their resilience and resources, we are acknowledging their existing strengths and crediting them with the power to help themselves.

This two day course will cover:

• The techniques of solution focussed interventions.

• Models of understanding and developing resilience in young people.

• Developing a vocabulary of strengths, resilience and the resources young people have.

• The opportunity to practice the skills and questioning that underpins solution-focussed work

• Making use of a resilience model.

‘Inter-personal skills – engaging young people in the helping relationship’

‘Mentors listen with full attentiveness, not with their ears, but with their spirit, their full heart. Learning and teaching are joyfully exchanged through deep listening and mutual appreciation’. The Tao of Leadership

In our work with young people we use a range of skills and knowledge. In doing so, we need to be human and at the same time professional, whilst building a rapport that facilitates the needs of the young person being met. So what are the core skills and conditions that facilitate this? What can we borrow from the worlds of counselling, mentoring, coaching and teaching that will resource us in our work and assist us in developing effective relationships with young people?

This one or two day event will cover:

• Diverse perspectives on what the helping relationship is, how it works and your role within it.

• Toning up the core listening and relating skills.

• Reviewing your attitudes.

• Reviewing the core conditions of effective support.

• Developing creative strategies for engaging and enabling young people to realise their goals.

‘Group work – engaging young people in group work & group situations’

We are raised in groups, we learn in them and then go on to work in them; in fact we need them yet they can sometimes be trouble. This experiential 2 day workshop offers you the opportunity to explore both formal and informal group work with young people. You will be able to reflect on your current experience and practice then go on to consider developing your facilitation skills and understanding of ‘group life’ to resource you in your work.

This 2 day training will cover:

•Toning up the core listening and relating skills.

• The nature of groups and group work.

• The potential of group work.

• Setting up groups.

• The core concerns of being in a group.

• Working with difficulty and challenge.

• Making the best of group work situations with young people.

• Establishing group safety.

• The role and skill base of an effective facilitator.

‘Responding to young people who self harm’

Some young people cause deliberate harm to themselves, most commonly by cutting, but also by burning, abusing drugs, alcohol or other substances. This can occur in the lives of young people at times of distress and low self-esteem. Self-harming behaviour is a means of managing difficult feelings, creating a physical manifestation of inner pain. So what is it that causes for some young people to harm themselves? What can you do when faced with a young person who is self harming or at risk? What can’t you do? We will begin to answer these questions in order for you to best manage the distress it can stir up in you followed by an exploration of how best to respond to the young people you work with.

This one day workshop will cover:

• The nature of self harming behaviour – how young people come to hurt themselves.

• Managing your own responses and the distress it can cause.

• Your ability to respond to young people who present self harming behaviour.

• Resources and services that can support you and the young people you work with.

‘Engaging with sexuality – managing the embarrassment factor’

All young people have to contend with a range of pressures relating to sex and sexuality as they navigate cultural expectations, prejudice, discrimination, peer pressure and the changes that their bodies and minds go through.

In order to navigate the dilemmas and joys of sexuality with some degree of ease, young people need access to adults who are able to respond creatively and effectively to their questions and concerns.

So how able are you in responding to young people who need to talk about sex, sexuality and sexual identity?

This workshop will provide you with the opportunity to examine and extend your practice in this area.

By the end of this workshop you will have:

• Explored your own attitudes and beliefs around sexuality as it relates to young people and your work.

• Considered how prejudice and discrimination impacts on the lives of all young people.

• Developed your practical ability to respond to the issues raised by young people around sexuality.

• Considered good practice for your work place.

• Identified what you need to know and other resources for your work.

‘Youth & Elderhood – ancient concepts and mentoring work with young people’
In our work with young people it often helps to have an understanding of the nature of adolescence and the developmental needs and tasks that young people face.

Creative and effective engagement of young people at this time in their lives requires a knowledge of the experience and purpose of ‘youth’, an awareness of our roles as ‘elders’, and the ability to respond when we come together in ‘the meeting place’. It is not enough to have skills and knowledge in our work, we need to be able to build and sustain relationships with young people that support their development and ours.

These four days provide the opportunity to look into the notions of ‘youth’, ‘elderhood’ and the ‘meeting place’ further thorugh considering how they can be a resource in your work and the lives of young people.

By the end of the 4 days you will have:

• Explored your own adolescent experience and examined how it can resource you in your work today.

• Examined a range of theoretical and cultural perspectives relevant to adolescence and the mentoring relationship .

• Practiced creative ways of engaging young people

• Developed your skills and ability to respond to young people in your practice

• Described and represented your philosophy of working with young people

‘Sexual Exploitation of Young People Through Prostitution’

This course aims to raise your awareness of the nature of what is often described in the media as ‘child prostitution’.

The contexts in which young people get caught up in sexual exploitation are many and varied. Their needs can be complex. Shame and fear can prevent them from asking for help.

So what do I need to know to be able to raise awareness of these issues? How can I support young people who are being exploited? Am I knowledgeable enough to be able to respond effectively?

This one day course will answer these questions and cover:

• How young people get involved in so called ‘child prostitution’.

• Terminology, the law and child protection issues.

• How to talk about these issues and raise awareness.

• The skills in engaging with young people who are at risk of or are being sexually exploited.

• The issues for young people in these circumstances and how you can best respond

Further examples of training that I have provided:

• Creative strategies for finding the opportunites in conflict.

• Assessment of young people’s needs & responding to them.

• Engaging young people in the counselling relationship

• Working with boys and young men

• Making counselling relevant and accessible to young people

• Creative stategies for the counselling relationships

• Transpersonal perspectives in working with young people

• Mentoring skills with young people

• Working with young people in distress and at risk.