YSS successful funding for Divert project

YSS Latest success:  a new project: Creating a diversionary referral pathway across West Mercia for young people aged 13-16 yrs

YSS is thrilled to announce that they have been successful in   being awarded the contract from the  West Mercia Police and Crime Commissioner to run a new  project working with 13-16 year olds,  across West Mercia.  This will work alongside   our YSS project ARC (Accessing Resources in the Community.) for 17-24 year olds.


The project, named Divert, will aim to build a more secure West Mercia, by diverting young people away from the Criminal Justice System, through enhanced intensive support in their local communities.  This diversionary activity will help in the reformation of West Mercia by reducing anti social behaviour and criminal activity linked to this age group and  offer the young people the best opportunities for a fulfilled and positive future.


Divert will create a  single point of contact  referral system for statutory and non statutory organisations  working with 13-16 year olds in, or  at risk of being involved in the criminal justice system across West Mercia. Divert will match keyworkers/ volunteer mentors to those referred in order  to build a relationship,  give 121 support, motivate them to reach their potential  and encourage them to engage with sustainable community based activities across West Mercia.


The Divert project will aim to break down the barriers, real or perceived, that stop young people engaging in positive activities e.g. transport/ equipment costs too high or  young people feel that an activity is not accessible for people “like them”.   In addition we will provide emotional/practical support, providing information/advice/ guidance around education, training, money, alcohol/drugs, accommodation, relationships, bullying including cyber bullying and digital inclusion. It will ensure young people have access to all relevant support services available in their community and will also make referrals to appropriate agencies to provide specialist support as required.


When asked why this project is needed, John Campion, West Mercia Police and Crime Commissioner  replied

  • “By investing now and working with the community to provide the right positive engagement projects, we can prevent minor issues becoming bigger issues down the line. We have the opportunity to change the path for the young people in our communities – be it ensuring they have the right information to be able to make informed decisions, or preventing them from getting into a cycle of offending.”


The project is due to start in May 2017 and run for 3 years.


Debb Grantham, YSS Operations Director  said

  • “We are thrilled  and excited to be working  on this new   project  across West Mercia, and  thank the West Mercia Police and Crime Commissioner  for  this opportunity to work  with 13-16 year olds with  potential for many positive outcomes.  These include  Community integration; Reduction in anti-social behaviour; Reduction in offending/re-offending; Improve Young Peoples understanding of the effect of crime on its Victims/survivors; Engagement in education, training; Engagement in positive activities; Addressing harm caused by alcohol and drug misuse; Identify and raise awareness around Young Peoples’ Mental Health; Improved family relationships and cohesion; Increased confidence and self esteem and  Improved emotional wellbeing.”
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