For more than thirty years we have had the privilege of working with young people in the Pilton and Muirhouse area of Edinburgh and are now excited to be working on some new developments there! In recent years this work has mainly been through DIME, a regular Thursday evening youth club based in one of the local churches. It’s been instrumental in helping transform the lives of young people in the area, with many becoming Christians and going on to be leaders at SU Scotland events.
This area of Edinburgh is one of the poorest parts of the city and many of the young people connected with us come from chaotic backgrounds and face huge challenges in their lives. Our work is characterised by long-term relationships and the willingness of leaders to invest in the lives of the young people – it’s not uncommon for some of the volunteers to spend several evenings a week supporting these young people. Over the last year we’ve spent time looking at how to develop this work to make an even greater impact and, as a result we are in the process of registering a local charity to take this work forward which will be called the Ferrywell Youth Project.
This name comes from the area where this work is based at the junction of Ferry Road and Pennywell Road. We’ve been inspired by the success of Junction 12, a local Glasgow based charity which grew out of SU Scotland work and which now has a hugely significant influence on the lives of young people in the Cranhill, Carntyne and Smithycroft areas of Glasgow. To help drive this work forward a small group of people have been meeting and praying together to think strategically about what we want to achieve and inevitably, as part of this process we have come up with a statement which expresses our hopes and dreams for the work:
Our vision is that through a project rooted on Christian faith and values, young people in the Pilton, Muirhouse and Drylaw area of Edinburgh are valued and supported; living lives characterised by positive, healthy and responsible choices and having a significant impact on the community including active engagement with local churches and other agencies.
At the heart of this our longing is for these young people to discover Jesus, realise that he is interested in every area of their lives and that they are not alone in facing the challenges that come their way.