Young people living away from home for the first time often lack the practical life skills they need to be able to achieve and sustain independent living.
Each young person supported by St Christopher's services is given a tailor-made support package to help them learn how to become independent and keep a record of how far they've come.
AQA Unit Award Scheme
Alongside the Outcome Star, we use nationally recognised AQA Unit Award Scheme to give our young people proof of the progress they have made in a range of different skills, including managing their personal budget or preparing a CV. The AQA programme gives many young people the confidence that they can achieve and rewards them for personal progress and achievement that is often not recognised by more formal qualifications.
Skills for Life Programme
To complement individual AQAs, St Christopher’s has launched Skills for Life, a programme of AQA Unit Award sessions that take place in a group setting.
While one-to-one support works well for some, we have found many young people learn more effectively in a group setting and have a chance to develop their listening and co-operation skills. The academy also helps to reduce social isolation and makes young people feel that they are not alone.
Skills for Life sessions are based around the shared support needs of the young people in our service and include:
- Maintaining a tenancy
- Managing personal budgets
- Cooking healthy meals
- Meaningful use of time – volunteering, seeking employment or training opportunities
Group sessions also enable support workers to reach more young people and deliver more sessions. It means that in many cases we are able to deliver substantially more than our contracted support hours.