Youth Development Project - Refugee Council

Youth Development Project

Our Youth Development Project helps newly arrived young asylum seekers learn to cope with the many and varied challenges they face. We run classes and social activities to help them to begin or continue their education, develop social skills, build self-confidence and start to trust again.

Learning with peers, joining group workshops and engaging in social activities helps young people to make friends, reduce their sense of isolation, and feel supported and hopeful for the future.

Education classes bring stability and structure to the children’s lives as well as help them learn about life in the UK. We provide English as a Second Language and maths classes to improve their skills and confidence as they wait for places in mainstream education.

In 2021, we delivered 416 ESOL classes and 52 Maths classes remotely (due to COVID-19). A total of 194 children attended these classes, which helped to boost their skills and confidence before entering mainstream education.

“I have so many things to say but I can’t. I never expected to have the support from Refugee Council when it closed [due to COVID-19].

Then the Refugee Council called me, we started classes at the end of March and I have learned English and maths, with Monday and Wednesday [social and cultural] activities and cricket.

My social worker told me that my English is so good and I tell them it is because of the Refugee Council. I am grateful for everything the Refugee Council did and you saved my life.

I did drawings in the lockdown and teachers supported me with maths and English and now my social worker took my drawings to a competition and I came second and they will give me £20.” — 17-year-old boy, Afghanistan

With the help of some amazing volunteers, we also run weekly creative workshops. These include sessions where children play musical instruments and sing together, hone their artistic skills and try their hands at drama.


"You help me to find the purpose, direction and vision in life again and you are helping me to achieve it - I am forever grateful." Young person


unaccompanied children were supported to access education in 2021.


children attended our social activities in 2021, including a weekly social evening every Wednesday, where they enjoyed drawing, poetry, music and live cooking via Zoom.

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You can help young people rebuild their lives by making a donation or volunteering on one of our projects.

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If you work with unaccompanied refugee children and would like to make a referral to the Youth Development Project, find out more and get in touch using the details below.

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Youth Development Project