Sunday, May 03, 2020

Building a climate of trust into a HELPING RELATIONSHIP

I have worked with lots of incredible kids 
in many youth work contexts.

I've worked, with inarticulate young people who often only speak  through their actions. 
I will sometimes greet a teenager, for instance, 
with the superficial 
"Hello Micky! - are you still taking the ugly pills?" 
followed quickly - with a punch in - the rib cage - 
or on the upper arm. 

If this is returned. - spontaneously - or sometime later during the evening - there lies the start of a relationship.

Some-times very few words are exchanged - 
for a long time - sometimes years, but communication takes place non-verbally. 
A smile, a grimace, a stare, a twinkling of the eye, 
a friendly kick!

All these are ways and means of making contact with a young human without pushing so hard that they back away from me who is trying to establish a helping relationship.

One teenage never spoke to me for two years - 
not even a simple 'hello'!
Then - one evening in the Youth Club
he came up to me and said::

"Pip I am in court tomorrow. If I get put away will you give these to my Mother"?
He pulled two rings off his fingers, placed them in my open palm and walked away.
I will never forget that.

I sign of trust.
I sign of some sort of relationship.