VOYC Newsletter September 2018


Don't forget to find us on social media, particularly if there is something you would like us to share for you. 

Best Wishes,

Mark Goodman mark@voycdevon.org.uk

Downloadable & print version

In this month’s newsletter: -
Topic: Scroll Free September
In The News: Papyrus Hope Walk, Make Your Mark, Self Harm, Energy Drinks
Meet our Members: YMCA Exeter
Meet the team: 
Training opportunities: Safeguarding, Safer Recruitment, Trustee & Management Committee Member Safeguarding
Events: Resilient Young Minds
Job Opportunities: Administrator
Your VOYC: Devon Young Farmers



Scroll Free September offers a unique opportunity to take a break from all personal social media accounts for 30 days during September A good relationship is one of balance, and Scroll Free September is here to help you gain that with social media both on and offline   Scroll Free September countdown.

With its almost universal reach and unprecedented ability to connect people from all walks of life, social media holds great potential to support good mental health and wellbeing. It has revolutionised the way we communicate and share information. Have you ever thought about your relationship with social media? Maybe it’s starting to have a negative impact on your life? Even making you a little anti-social? 
Emerging evidence is raising concerns about the potential impact of social media on our mental health and wellbeing. In 2017, our #StatusOfMind report highlighted a range of potential negative effects of social media, including anxiety and depression, negative body image, cyberbullying, poor sleep and FOMO (fear of missing out).
By going Scroll Free for a month, you’ll have a chance to reflect on your social media use – what you missed, what you didn’t, and what you got to do and enjoy instead.
By taking notice of and learning which elements of social media make you feel good and which make you feel bad, participating in Scroll Free September could help you build a healthier, more balanced relationship with social media in the future – a relationship where your use is conscious and mindful, and where you are the one in control. How do I get involved? We are asking all social media users (not just young people!) to take a break from all personal social media accounts throughout September (work use and instant messaging apps are fine!).
We know that going cold turkey on social media will be a challenge, so before you start tweeting your excuses, don't worry – we are providing you with a few different options to make your participation that bit easier.

Sign up to Scroll Free September
View the full #stateofmind report here

7 in 10 young people have experienced cyber bullying
1 in 5 young people
wake in the night
to check messages on social media
56% of young people
say they are likely to quit social media due to concerns about its mental health and wellbeing impact.

Who can take part?All social media users (not just young people!) can take part in Scroll Free September and take a break from all personal social media accounts (work use and instant messaging apps are fine!).Not sure it’s for you? Use the quiz to work out your Social Media Index (SMI) and find out how healthy your relationship with social media is and if you could benefit from taking a break.
Please note this quiz is designed to provide a light-hearted indication of your social media usage, and should not be taken as a scientific health test.

"Scroll Free September is right to highlight growing concerns that social media is contributing to increasing mental health issues in young people, and a major ramp up of services will be needed to deal with the problems as part of the NHS 10 year plan. We need to see concerted action, with everyone taking responsibility, including social media giants, so that the NHS is not left to pick up the pieces of a mental health epidemic in the next generation." Claire Murdoch, National Director for Mental Health, NHS England


In The News


HOPEWalk is back – and with a brand-new look! HOPEWALK is a month of walks taking place across the UK in October, organised by you, with help from Papyrus.

Your walk can be around your park, along your favourite countryside trail, or even just around the block and you can have as many or as few people join as you like. Some people choose to walk in memory of a loved one, others choose to walk to fundraise and raise awareness. The aim is to get the conversation around suicide started, in order to #SmashTheStigma.

10th October is World Mental Health Day and it is well known that going for a walk, and connecting with friends and family, can promote good mental health and give you a bit of a boost. Find out more


Join thousands of young people in deciding what your UK Youth Parliament should campaign on! 

On the 9th November – your Members of Youth Parliament will come together to debate and decide at UKYP House of Commons sitting, the most important issue to campaign on for the year ahead. They will decide from the top 5 issues selected by you!

Last year over 950,000 young people took part in the ballot and this year we want 1 million young people to take part! Make your mark here.



More than 100,000 children aged 14 in the UK are self-harming, with one in four girls of this age having deliberately hurt themselves, according to a new report.

In figures that show the scale of the mental health crisis affecting young people, the Children’s Survey analysed a survey of 11,000 14-year-olds which found that a quarter of girls and nearly one in 10 boys had self-harmed in a year.

The charity estimated that 110,000 children aged 14 may be self-harming, including 76,000 girls and 33,000 boys. Read the article here



The consultation is part of the government’s plan to reduce childhood obesity and other health problems in children. Department of Health and Social Care
The government is seeking views from the public on ending the sale of energy drinks to children and young people in England, the Prime Minister has announced.
The consultation proposes that a ban would apply to drinks that contain more than 150mg of caffeine per litre and prevent all retailers from selling the drinks to children.
It follows the publication of the latest chapter of the government’s childhood obesity plan in June 2018, which outlines a series of measures as well as a commitment to halve childhood obesity by 2030.

Project of the Month

Each month we select a member to be project of the month. If you would like the opportunity, please get in touch admin@voycdevon.org.uk



Following a month long crowdfunding campaign and the inspirational effort of a small team of residents, YMCA Exeter opened it’s first ‘pop-up cafe’ in the city centre.
‘Communi-Cafe’, the name chosen by young residents living at YMCA Exeter, is part of our Connect skills and enterprise programme which trains young people disciplines such as marketing, accounting, customer service and team building, and then empowering them to deliver their own pop-up enterprise.
Led by project co-ordinator, Jane Spain and Joint CEO, Gareth Sorsby, the initiative is also an expression of our young peoples’ desire to learn, share and build community in an ever-increasing time of loneliness. With over £3,000 raised through a crowdfunding campaign, it too demonstrates the desire of the local community to support grassroots projects with a difference.



5. Meet The Team

Karen steps down as Chairman of VOYC


After two years as Vice Chairman and four years in the role of Chairman Karen Acott stood down at the July meeting of the Trustees. Tributes were paid to her by her fellow Trustees as they thanked Karen for both her commitment and the astute leadership as she had shown as she led VOYC through some challenging times during her time as Chairman. Karen in turn expressed her thanks to her fellow Trustees and thanking them for their support and how they had educated her in the importance of informal education with children and young people within communities. Peter Brewer was then elected as the new Chairman with Gill Millar being elected to the post of Vice Chairman.



Training Opportunities



9th November (9.15 am for 9.30 am start and finishing approx 4.30 pm) 
 This Devon Children and Families Partnership (formerly Devon Safeguarding Children Board) approved Group 3 training is for members of the not for profit children and young people’s workforce who have particular responsibilities in relation to advising and supporting other staff (paid/unpaid) who may have safeguarding concerns, who have the responsibility to receive and refer safeguarding information. This also includes self-employed ‘stand-alone’ practitioners who do not work within an organisation (ie childminders, private tutors, etc).

16th November 9.30 – 12.45 at the 100 Club Wear Barton Road, Exeter.

Cost: £15 to VOYC members (£25 to non-members) To find out all about the FREE membership click here.

This Devon Children & Families Partnership (formerly Devon Safeguarding Children Board) approved awareness raising training has been specifically designed for organisations working in the voluntary and community sector and also private sector, and will cover important issues such as:

  • Who needs DBS Checks?
  • Effective Staff Induction, Supervision and Appraisal
  • Legislation and Policy
  • Reporting Concerns
  • Best Practice

 Please complete the booking form in order to secure your place/s

21st November 13.00 – 16.30 at the 100 Club. More details to follow.
£10/candidate to VOYC members, £15/candidate to non-members.  To find out all about the FREE membership click here.

This awareness raising course will enable participants to better understand their role and safeguarding responsibilities if their groups are providing activities or services for children and young people.

The outcomes from the session will be that you:

  • will be able to demonstrate an increased awareness of the legal framework for safeguarding and child protection;
  • better understand Trustees / Management Committee members responsibilities for safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children;
  • would be better able to scrutinise any decisions made by your organisation when a concern about a child or young person has been identified;
  • learn about the Devon Children & Families Partnership (formerly Devon Safeguarding Children Board) safeguarding standards for the Voluntary and Community Sector in Devon;
  • better understand the issues around recording and sharing information.

To book your place on this course, complete the booking form and send to juliet@voycdevon.org.uk.  An invoice will then be sent to you.  Once payment has been made your place on this course will be secured.



22/23 November 2018 The Clay Factory, PL21 0EZ

Every person is born with wellbeing as innate - no matter what life has thrown their way; yet the NHS and education systems are struggling to cope with an epidemic of mental health issues.

Young people in particular are being affected in numbers like never before.

At this conference we share a revolutionary approach that focuses on the hidden variable and source of wellbeing. It is simple and effective - and it works -for everyone - including young people.

For more events check our website.

Job Opportunities


20 hrs p/w 43 weeks per year Working pattern: 4 days 10am - 2pm, 1 day 2pm - 6pm Salary: NJC pts 12 - 17 (£17,173.00 - £18,672.00 fte)

DYS Space Ltd (space*) works to unlock potential with young people and their communities. They have an exciting opportunity at their Independent School, Chances, for a dynamic and determined administrator to join them. Read more

See more vacancies on our website http://www.voycdevon.org.uk/job-vacancies which is constantly updated.


10. Blog – Devon Young Farmers


  If you would like to write a blog for our newsletter please get in touch.


A group of young Farmers from across the County recently gave up an evening to share their views on how they feel mental health services should be delivered to young people in Devon.  As part of the local authority tendering process our members were asked to come up with some of the questions to ask those companies applying for this contract.
The evening highlighted again, the many people in our community that need support but do not often know where to go for help or how to ask for it.  If you have fractured your arm and have a plaster cast on it, people can easily see and ask how are you and what have you done etc?  When you are not feeling ok in your head and you may be stressed, anxious or low it can be harder for people to see and to ask about.  If you are feeling like this it can also be hard to know who to talk to and ask for help. 
The Young Farmers are work in partnership with FCN and others over the coming year to raise awareness.  With the Devon YFC training its own team of volunteers and with FCN support, we are going to get around to our clubs to give sessions on how people can keep themselves well and if people need further support we will let them know the right place to get it.  The team are also taking part in the two-day ASIST training.  ASIST teaches participants to recognise when someone may be at risk of suicide and work with them to create a plan that will support their immediate safety.  Talking about suicide to young people and our communities is healthy.  If it is less of a taboo subject hopefully more people will recognise the issues and know how and when to seek help. - Nick Creasy     

Find out more about Devon Young Farmers.    

Stay up to date with us via the website, weekly & monthly newsletters, Twitter & Facebook. Got something you want to share? Get in touch admin@voycdevon.org.uk 



Join us


The BENEFITS of membership include:

  1. An essential weekly Children & Young People News bulletin straight to your inbox - highly topical, invaluable local and national news, training and events, funding and analysis of hot topics and key policy areas
  2. Discounted training including child protection training
  3. Access to hands-on practical help, guidance and support in running your children or young people's club or service
  4. Latest local funding, training and opportunities
  5. The benefit of being part of a larger network with a strong VOYC at a strategic county level

Why Join Us?

VOYC Devon is an independent charity set up in the 1960’s by Devon’s voluntary and community youth organisations. It exists to ensure the development and recognition of a vibrant, sound and diverse voluntary and community children and young people’s sector that involves, empowers and meets the needs and aspirations of children and young people by strengthening and supporting the work of its network.

Its Aims are to:
Provide practical help to maintain and develop the children and young people’s voluntary sector to enhance work with and the services provided for children and young people;
Support, develop and promote collaboration and networking to enable the sector to access and make appropriate use of a wide range of resources and to help the sector to value and make the best use of the people that can support their work with young people;

Enable the children and young people’s voluntary sector to have a voice and influence.

Membership categories

There are Three Categories of VOYC Membership:

  1. Network
  2. Individual Group
  3. Associate

Network Membership is open to those youth organisations that provide an infrastructure function to a wider membership of frontline voluntary and community youth groups / organisations.

Individual Group / Organisation Membership is open to any voluntary or community Group / Organisation who is working with or supporting work with children and young people in Devon.

Associate Membership is for those Agencies and Voluntary Organisations that are supportive of the aims of VOYC and want to share information with and receive information from VOYC.

The Cost? Membership is currently FREE!

Organisations/individual groups interested in membership should:-

If you're not sure which category Membership you fall into please click on 'Who Can Join VOYC Devon' below.

Membership Principles of VOYC Devon  

VOYC aims to be a fully inclusive organisation that truly represents the voluntary youth sector in Devon. It will endeavour to involve all organisations who are currently under-represented in its network, in particular BME youth organisations, organisations working with disabled young people, organisations that pioneer new approaches to youth work and organisations working with marginalised children and young people as well as ensuring full geographical coverage.

VOYC supports the principle of equal opportunities in its employment practice, service delivery and through its role as advocate for the wider children and young people's sector. We are committed to providing services for everyone, regardless of age, colour, race, disability, religious belief, HIV status, marital status or sexual orientation. We expect that all members will be actively committed to the improvement of equal opportunities.

VOYC actively welcomes new members and is keen to work with as wide a range of organisations/individual groups who subscribe to its aims and objectives as possible.