Westminster House Youth Club

Serving a diverse and vibrant community since 1888

Members of Westminster House Youth Club

Grant awarded: £30,000 a year for 3 years: 2020-2023 - unrestricted grant

Westminster House Youth Club is one of the oldest Youth Clubs in the country. Established in 1888, our membership is 80% BAME and 50% female.  We have 200+ members, including those with both visible and invisible disabilities and many with EHCPs* engaged in all areas of our programme. We have a high proportion of looked after children, and those under Special Guardianship arrangements, usually with a grandmother. 

In addition to 5 nights a week of generic and after-school provision, we run an accreditation programme including the Duke of Edinburgh Award Scheme and The Young Leader programme. Both offer opportunities for volunteering and paid work.  We deliver daytime work for young people at risk of exclusion and extensive holiday provision, with food poverty relief and free vitamin D programmes, catering for young people at times of greatest risk. 

Despite the fact that MOPAC* identified Nunhead as one of 63 London wards that are 'most vulnerable to crime, we work with young people and their families to ensure they remain in education and out of the criminal justice system. 

The ethos underpinning our work is addressing inequity of advantage/privilege.  We are aware the issues our young people face (poor educational/work opportunities, lack of credible role-models, prevalence of gang culture, high incidence of underage sexual activity and Child Sexual Exploitation (CSE), exposure to drug and alcohol misuse, exposure to harmful internet material, overcrowding, being caught up in the care system, fixed term or permanent exclusions etc) can limit their life choices not just as a young person but moving into adulthood. Our response to this is to accept ANY meaningful affordable opportunity.

Our programmes bring people together and build strong relationships in and across communities by:

  • increasing accreditations and employment/education prospects for our members;
  • improving health (both mental and physical) for members;
  • giving participants information/skills to make informed and positive life choices in a number of areas including violence and gang related issues, gun and knife crime, sexual health and education.

Katie Worthington, Director

*EHCP: Educational and Health Care Plan; MOPAC: Mayor's Office for Policing and Crime

WHYC's website   WHYC on twitter

We can see what a difference your commitment and positivity makes to your members and to the wider community of families, carers, local organisations and school teachers - developing food deliveries with the help of new local partners, getting the members to help out, supporting your staff - or whether it's been getting extra funding to deliver laptops or new Homework and Tutoring clubs. We value your honesty in sharing how tough it's been. Peter Minet Trust, July 2021