In term time we work with needy and disenfranchised young people referred from schools, complementary education centres and local authorities. Sessions aimed at encouraging the student to re-engage with society and education usually run from 9am – 3pm and are led by qualified and experienced coaches. Each session is carefully tailored to the needs of the individual young person.
During school holidays we run skills and techniques sessions, which are supported through grants generously supplied by BBC Children in Need and are offered on a selective basis to children most likely to benefit from our coaches' assistance. These can be based around any of the activities we offer and are designed to be engaging as well as enjoyable and fun. These sessions normally run from 10am-4pm but can be adapted to suit the individual child's needs. Qualifications can sometimes be delivered in holiday sessions if requested and agreed prior to the sessions.
The sessions we run are centred around our core activities of Angling, Environmental Maintenance, Arts and Crafts & Aquarium Systems - with other life skills such as Photography, Outdoor Skills, Horticulture, Cycling and Bicycle Maintenance, Indoor and Outdoor Cooking & Sports being employed when appropriate
Completing an approachable and achievable qualification helps young people recognise their own strengths, develops personal skills and boosts their self-esteem so they can approach other learning situations in the future with confidence and move on positively in their life. We are an accredited BTEC and Gateway Qualifications Centre.
Taking part in outdoor activities engages young people and helps them to have a more positive outlook on life, their own abilities and their potential. It also provides them with fresh air and time and space away from difficult circumstances and bad influences, which is proven to be very therapeutic for children whose life does not otherwise offer much opportunity for such activity. Being in green spaces with flora and fauna has been shown to provide a valuable respite from anxiety, while working in small groups helps young people to work and communicate as part of a team. Typically at A4S, we work on either a 1:1 (student:coach) or 2:1 basis; providing a personal and non-intimidating environment for the child. If a young person is coached 1:1, we try gradually to integrate them into small group situations, where possible and to the child's benefit.