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In 2016, offences by young people aged under 18 accounted for 1.11% for all serious violence in Milton Keynes. By 2021, it had risen to 19.37%. Learning from successful work to reduce violence affecting young people in cities across the UK such as Glasgow, Birmingham, and London, we know that a positive, pro-active, and holistic approach is needed that works alongside young people and their communities to find local solutions.

Therefore, YMCA Milton Keynes has committed to expanding its work beyond housing by forming a new Youth and Community Directorate to spearhead this approach. To enable this expansion, we are delighted that Milton Keynes Community Foundation have supported us with a 3-year Large Strategic Grant. We are grateful for their support and look forward to seeing what we can collectively achieve for communities in Milton Keynes in the coming years.

“We are proud to be able to support YMCA MK through a brand-new three-year Large Strategic Grant. We know that YMCA MK continuously works to help so many young people across our city.

It’s an honour to know that this funding will enable the work of YMCA MK to reach more communities and help more young people before they get to crisis point.”

Ian Revell, CEO, Milton Keynes Community Foundation.

To date, YMCA MK has delivered the award-winning Hospital Navigator Scheme in partnership with Thames Valley Violence Reduction Unit and Milton Keynes University Hospital which utilises a ‘reachable moment’ in A&E to provide ongoing youth mentoring for those affected by serious violence, self-harm, mental health, and drug/alcohol dependency. Of the 70% of young people that engaged with the Hospital Navigator Scheme, 52% did not reattend A&E that year thanks to positive interventions and signposting.

Due to the success of this scheme, YMCA MK is expanding its youth mentoring programmes in partnership with the Milton Keynes City Council Youth Offending Team and funded by Children in Need. Young people affected by violence will be referred to YMCA MK and provided with a youth mentor to connect them with their local community, provide them with a sense of belonging and ongoing support from a positive trusted adult.

If you would like to know more about our work please get in touch with kat.newman@mkymca.com.