MYIC Volunteers Voice Out

Manchester YIC Volunteers Voice Out

by Nickroy Newish

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While Safeguarding the welfare of the nation’s children was the focus of activities for National Labour Day 2015, under the theme: ‘Labour of Love, Nurturing Our Children’ we the volunteers at the Manchester Youth Information Centre thought it would have been an appropriate time to seek sponsorship to execute needed projects on the site.

The projects the Youth Volunteers wanted to undertake to enhance the Manchester Youth Information Centre (YIC) in Mandeville are:

  • To construct a safe recreational space (a gazebo); 
  • To construct a play area for the children of the users of the YIC; and 
  • To paint the facility. ‘

These projects are not just any arbitrarily thought of initiative’ expressed NickRoy Neish a volunteer at the YIC since its doors opened in 2010. These projects are of great importance in ensuring holistic development for our youth. ‘The gazebo,’ volunteer Jerome Forbes posits ‘will engender serenity, privacy and can be considered a space for relaxation. While identifying that the youth who use the space are from varying strata with a myriad of challenges and issues and sometimes require counseling or individual sessions this space can also be used as a counseling area.’

One volunteer (who requested to remain nameless) commented that ‘a play area is also critical as whenever I visit the YIC with my children it may become inconvenient to the other users as well as the staff as the children become restless in a space not designed for their comfort and use. Having such play area will enable a aiding YIC for both parent and child, but most importantly it will be a space where our children can have fun and a safe experience.’ The volunteers unanimously declared that “The YIC opened its doors in 2010 and the aesthetics of the building has never been improved. As a youth friendly space we believe more can be done to improve its appearance. Currently a fresh coat of paint and murals can alter the boredom of the space.’ T

he volunteers expressed that ‘while these projects were not realized on Labour Day we are still desirous of undertaking said projects with the assistance from sponsors/donors/partners who believe it is important for us as youth development practitioners to partner to ensure that we create and enhance safe spaces for our nation’s youth.’