Youth Work Week provides an opportunity for youth organisations, youth workers and young people to celebrate their achievements and the impact of their work.

This year it will be held from 6-12 November 2017.

This year’s theme is Youth Services: youth work for today and tomorrow

Youth services are vital to young people. At their most basic they provide a place for young people to go and something for them to do. But with the involvement of skilled youth workers they can be much more; contributing to young people’s social and emotional development, helping them feel more confident, understand themselves and other people, and become resilient, responsible citizens.

Over the past ten years youth services have undergone massive change. Swingeing cuts have reduced the local authority youth offer or in some cases destroyed it completely. An estimated £387m has been cut from youth service spending by local authorities in the last six years according to Unison, and cuts are still being announced.

Yet whilst youth services are taking a battering, the need for good youth work has not gone away. And despite huge uncertainty, dedicated, committed youth workers continue to deliver creative provision that has positive outcomes for young people.

Recent events have also focused politicians and policy makers on young people’s vulnerability to grooming and radicalisation, and the role of youth work in supporting vulnerable young people and reporting safeguarding concerns at an early stage is once again being discussed.

The theme of Youth Work Week 2017 is Youth Services – youth work for today and tomorrow.

NYA believes there is a clear role for youth work in local services that support young people.

We want to shine a light on the resilient youth work projects that have endured and celebrate the great work that continues. We want to showcase what best practice looks like and look at how youth work can shape future support services. We want to celebrate the structures and models that are working well to support young people today.

Send in your case studies, stories, photos, reports, thoughts, comments on what good youth services look like and the role of youth work within them.

Twitter: @natyouthagency #YWW17

Facebook: nationalyouthagency



We’ll post plans, activities and much more on Youth Work Week over the coming months so check back here soon.

To keep up to date with all things Youth Work Week, get on our mailing list.


What happened in last year’s Youth Work Week?

We held a Twitter campaign, asking people to tweet a banner explaining why they support youth work. We received more than 220! Here’s just a few and you can see more on our twitter moment here.


Who took part in Youth Work Week?

In Leicester, young people hosted an evening of entertainment celebrating Youth Work Week with contributions from all youth projects including dance performances and raps.

Young Lambeth Coop celebrated with a tour of Lambeth youth forums, promoting youth voice. Youthscape hosted the Christian Youth Work Awards.

Case studies were contributed from many organisations including Winchester Diocese,Positive Futures Liverpool, Y services youth work in Hampshire, YMCA George Williams College and Toynbee Hall.

A young people’s debate was held in Broxbourne. Rochdale Youth Service,Northumberland Youth Cabinet and Y Care International and many, many more held celebratory activities. A film about 50 years of youth work in Newham was premiered in Stratford, London. Throughout the week youth work projects were tweeting about their projects and plans.

There were over 1500 tweets to #YWW16 from a wide variety of youth organisations from big national organisations like London Youth, Ambition and UK Youth to local youth work projects to council youth services. We created some twitter moments to capture these – take a look here and here.

What did NYA do in Youth Work Week?

Monday 7 November

Blog post from NYA on how youth work supports social mobility

Blog post from Kerry North, O2 senior manager, youth & community

Social mobility case study day one: Makeshift Cinema


Tuesday 8 November

Ambition Conference including keynote speeches from youth minister Rob Wilson and shadow youth minister Steve Reed MP. We live tweeted from the event.

Podcast from The Environment Now team: Lydia and Heather from The Environment Now discussed how youth work can help young people be the best they can be.

Trustees Week: NYA Chair on why he believes in youth work.

Social mobility case study day two: Mini WE day


Wednesday 9 November

Blog post by Anna Smee, UK Youth CEO.

STEM social conference in Leicester – Jessica Okoro, a young person from Leicester has a passion to get young people into STEM (Science, Tech, Engineering and Maths).

Q&A with young trustee Yasmin Greenaway

Social mobility case study day three: Street Magic Mike


Thursday 10 November

Blog post by Emma Revie, Ambition CEO

Social mobility case study day four: Upcycling

Social Media Takeover – NYA’s Twitter channel was taken over by Lily and Emily from the GoThinkBig team.


Friday 11 November

Social mobility case study day five: YMCA George Williams College evaluation of the Youth Forum at the Serpentine Galleries

Q&A with young trustee Natalie Smith

UK Youth Parliament debate 11-4pm. Our trustees Natalie and Yasmin watched the debates and tweeted from the Palace of Westminster.

Anne-Marie Imafidon created Stemettes and then became CEO – here’s her inspirational story.


If you’d like to contribute to Youth Work Week in 2017, please sign up to our mailing list.