Centre for Research

The latest in youth work research in the UK

A Stormzy in the youth work teacup?

By rachel.warwick@youthscape.co.uk

I’m sitting here writing this listening to the new Stormzy Album, ‘Gang Signs and Prayer’. I’m sure you have heard of it in the Christian world because a semi-popular member of the music industry has proclaimed a faith – at least he has a couple of songs that you could use in church if you wanted. We Christians love to stake a claim! But it’s the whole album that I think is interesting and points to something bigger and entirely more poignant than a couple of beautiful hymns.

James Fawcett listens to the new Stormzy album and reflects on the ways it presents youth culture...

The truth about small group resources

By rachel.warwick@youthscape.co.uk

The beating heart of youth discipleship is not found in the grand scale event, the sleep deprived festival, or even the sweat-soaked mission trip; it’s in the weekly grind of small group ministry. Tim Gough from Youth Work Hacks  reveals his research into how youth workers use small groups and whether the current resources are really meeting the need. Read more...

Theresa May and the burning issue of mental health

By rachel.warwick@youthscape.co.uk

On the 9th January, Prime Minister May gave her first speech of 2017. After laying out her policies and thoughts on Brexit, the divide between rich and poor, and the general state of the country, she said the phrase: “I want to turn to one of those burning injustices in particular – the burning injustice of mental health and inadequate treatment that demands a new approach from government and society as a whole”

Helen Cutteridge, Emotional Wellbeing Worker at Youthscape, gives us a youth worker's perspective on the Prime Minister's plans. Click here to read more...

THE ‘SEXTING’ PHENOMENON - and why we need to keep talking

By rachel.warwick@youthscape.co.uk

Rachel Gardner examines some new research on how to help young people navigate the sexting culture and raises some challenges for youth workers as they approach this issue.

Academics in Australia have recently called for an end to Government-funded, abstinence- only sexting education.Why? Because simply telling teens not to sext doesn’t work. Even worse, it seems to be loading shame and judgement on the very people it’s trying to help. Instead of a reduction in nude-selfie-sharing, Australian teens seem to be ramping things up and of course they’re not alone. The global phenomenon of ‘sexting’ (a term coined as recently as 2005) isn’t going away. In fact, it’s absorption into young people’s daily lives is an indication that when it comes to ‘sexting’ we’re not talking about the 21st century version of the underwear section of the BHS catalogue! Young people are engaging in digital sexual cultures, and like all sexual activity, there are real consequences. Read more...

Is the internet changing how young people engage with the Bible?

By Admin

Every other day a survey seems to hit our news feeds about teenagers and technology use. A recent survey from Digital Awareness UK revealed that almost half of young people are checking their mobile phones after they have gone to bed. Of the 2750 young people surveyed, one in ten admitted to checking their phones at least 10 times a night.

Youthscape's Head of Research, Phoebe Hill asks what this means for churches and their youth work.

The state of girlhood in the UK: How can we turn up the volume of hope for girls?

By Admin

Last week, GirlGuiding UK’s survey revealed that girls are becoming increasingly unhappy and lacking in confidence. Surrounded by a popular culture which both screams and whispers to girls ‘You’re not enough’, how can we, as a church, empower a generation of girls to live in Gospel hope?

Rather than paralysing us, these statistics and the honest voices of girls should mobilise us to respond to girls’ needs, concerns and aspirations in relevant ways! Hope is not just a word; real hope spurs us to action. It fuels us to be so dissatisfied with the status quo so that we’ll be the change we want to see in the world. But we need to put hope into action. And youth workers have a key role in doing this.

Read Dr Claire Rush's five suggestions for empowering this hope.

The state of girlhood in the UK: What are girls telling us?

By Admin

Last week, Girlguiding UK published its annual Girls’ Attitudes Survey; the UK’s largest annual survey into girls’ views and experiences as they grow up today. The 2016 survey captured the voices of 1,627 girls and young women (seven to 21s) across the UK on seven key issues including body confidence, women in the media and everyday sexism, personal safety and harassment, online and social media, and mental and emotional well-being. You can read the full report here.

So what are the key messages that girls are communicating to us?

Volunteers and Training

By rachel.warwick@youthscape.co.uk

Dr Nick Shepherd,  Assistant Director of Discipleship and Ministry for the Diocese of Southwark, reflects on our recent survey on the training needs of youth workers.

Youth Work Training Survey

By rachel.warwick@youthscape.co.uk

In October 2015 the Jerusalem Trust, in partnership with Youthscape, carried out a piece of research into the training needs of youth workers. The survey was completed by 400 youth workers from around the UK.

Self-harm and Gender Expression

By rachel.warwick@youthscape.co.uk

An estimated 48% of transgender young people aged under 26 have attempted suicide, and 59% have deliberately harmed themselves (PACE Mental Health Charity). This is a massive concern, and SelfharmUK is committed to talking about the difficult issues facing young people. Ruth Ayres from selfharm.co.uk looks at the links between self-harm and gender expression.

Raised on Porn

By rachel.warwick@youthscape.co.uk

A report commissioned by the NSPCC, finally provides us with concrete evidence proving, what many of us previously believe to true, Children and young people are at risk of becoming ‘desensitised’ to online porn. Here, Jemimah Woodbridge, Romance Academy Project Director, offers three things that we can learn from the research.

IMPORTANT SURVEY ALERT!!

By rachel.warwick@youthscape.co.uk

Every once in a while we like to do a piece of research that is so important, and so ground-breaking, that no one has ever attempted to do it before. Ladies and gentlemen, we present… the definitive (sort of) survey of youth workers’ favourite biscuits, and probably the best pie chart you have ever seen. Read more...