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Unity Hub – Romford

The Unity Hub functions as a secure haven catering to the needs of young individuals and is conveniently situated on South Street, Romford. It operates every Wednesday, commencing its activities at 3pm.

Its central focus centres on involving young people in music, podcasting, and gaming, all aimed at fostering a robust sense of community among the youth. In close partnership with the London Borough of Havering, the Unity Hub takes on the form of a mobile bus, extending an invitation for young individuals to step aboard.

Our primary objective is to establish a secure and welcoming space within the community, providing an opportunity for the community to unite and gain a deeper understanding of the youth and their requirements. Often, young people find themselves without guidance or suitable destinations, and UNITY HUB is dedicated to offering prospects and directing them to other engaging activities.

Our goal is to provide valuable direction and advice by pointing towards various activities within the local vicinity. Additionally, we extend assistance and guidance on topics that hold significance for both young individuals and parents.

Group of mixed young teenagers people in casual wear playing with plastic flying disc game in a park oudoors. jumping woman catch a disk to a teammate in a match. milennial friends outside in a garden

Unity Hub – Dartford

The Unity Hub serves as a safe haven for young people and is conveniently located within Dartford’s central park. Operating every Tuesday, it opens at 1pm during the summer holidays and transitions to a 3pm start thereafter.

The primary focus lies on engaging in sports and diverse activities, aiming to cultivate a strong sense of community among the youth. In collaboration with Dartford Council, the Unity Hub takes the form of a bus that invites young individuals to step onboard. Some sessions even revolve around the art of music creation.

Pencil Letters

A Poem by Billy

Learn to love me..

I was born like this you see,

My Brain is wired slightly differently.

I look at things, in a different way.

Sometimes, I ignore what you say.

My wires get crossed,

In, turn I lose my plot.

I get angry, and start to curse.

Don’t worry this by far is not the worst..

I sit alone and wonder why I’m different to my friends? 

Wonder why their mums don’t like me in the end? 

I haven’t done anything wrong.

But, be their friend along.

I am a friend who is loyal, even when my head is about to boil. 

Mum tells me not to worry, 

She tells me I’m OK, but I know that’s what she is meant to say.

And dad loves me, even after what I said to him yesterday. 

Yes I’m wired different but what did I do wrong?

The head teacher wants me again, I have to sit with her all day long.

My teacher called me a nuecense, my friends say I’m a pest. 

But when it comes to football

They call me ‘the best’. 

My day started good, 

And ended in disaster.

That’s because my Brain went faster.. It got to hard through the day, I threw my work away. My head became a daze. I can’t cope feeling this way. 

I live in my bubble, but I always seem to be in trouble.

The medication isn’t nice, I have to take that once a day, or even twice. 

People judge me because a naughty child is all they see.

Why? Do they do that and not ask me. For my illness you can’t see.

I was born with ADHD.

I am not different from what you can see. 

As I said I’m a normal child, just wired up differently. 

Talk to me, to understand,

And you will learn to love me.

By Billy

How wonderful it is to witness the talent and creativity of the young people we are mentoring at Youth Unity! This poem is truly remarkable and showcases the depth of emotions and imagination that can be unlocked through nurturing and support.

It’s evident that this young poet has a gift for crafting evocative verses that resonate with readers. The imagery is vivid, and the emotions conveyed are palpable, making the poem a moving piece of art.

This poem serves as a testament to the positive impact of mentorship and the potential that lies within each young person, waiting to be nurtured and unlocked. It also reinforces the significance of creating safe spaces where young individuals can explore and develop their talents freely.


Development Mentors Clacton

Development Mentoring Program - Clacton

Working in partnership with the Community Safety Team  at Tendring District Council

Our Serious Youth Violence Mentor is a dedicated professional who will be providing guidance, support, and intervention to young individuals who are at risk of or involved in serious youth violence. They will work closely with young people to address the underlying factors that contribute to their involvement in violent behaviours and help them develop positive alternatives and pathways for their future.


Just some of the key pathways to ensure we are supporting vulnerable young people 


Mentoring and Building Relationships: Establish a trusting and supportive relationship with young individuals at risk of serious youth violence. Act as a role model, providing guidance, empathy, and a non-judgmental approach.


Risk Assessment and Intervention: Conduct thorough assessments to identify the specific risk factors and underlying issues contributing to a young person’s involvement in serious youth violence. Develop individualised intervention plans to address these factors effectively.


Emotional and Behavioral Support: Provide emotional support and help young individuals develop strategies to manage anger, frustration, and other emotions in a constructive manner. Assist in building resilience and coping mechanisms to navigate challenging situations.


The project is led by Paul Robinson

Paul is an experienced professional with a strong background in intervention, sport, and crime reduction management. He brings a wealth of knowledge and a genuine passion for making a positive impact in the lives of young people. Having enjoyed a successful coaching career in both the UK and the US, Paul made a deliberate decision to shift his focus towards utilizing sports and arts as a means of engaging with hard-to-reach young individuals. His goal is to uplift their aspirations and guide them away from a path of criminality.

In his most recent role as the Crime Reduction Manager at Charlton Athletic Football Trust (CACT), Paul demonstrated his leadership skills by spearheading projects that advanced and innovated criminal exploitation prevention across Kent and South East London. Currently, Paul serves as the Youth Unity Essex SYV Coordinator, where he takes on the responsibility of leading efforts in addressing serious youth violence.

Paul’s commitment to community safety and tackling serious youth violence is evident through his involvement in various London-based advisory boards. He actively contributes his expertise and insights to shape strategies and initiatives aimed at ensuring the well-being and security of local communities.

Overall, Paul’s background, experience, and engagement with advisory boards reflect his dedication to making a difference in the lives of young people, promoting community safety, and driving positive change.

Youth Unity Horse Racing

Induction into horse racing

The British Racing School
Introduction to Racing Residential Course

The British Racing School

An Introduction to Racing, Residential Course

The British Racing School is a Charitable Foundation and the provision of the Introduction to Racing Weeks are kindly supported by the Gerald Leigh Charitable Trust.

For more information on the British Racing School, please visit:

In 2022, Shirley Jackson, Managing Director of Youth Unity, had the privilege of visiting the British School of Racing during the Racing Media Academy.

The visit left a lasting impression as Shirley was captivated by the exceptional facilities and the array of opportunities available for young people.

Building upon the continued partnership working with BRS, it was through this connection that Youth Unity was presented with an incredible opportunity.

BRS shared with us a proposition to invite young people aged 15 to 18 to participate in a life-changing five-day residential program focused on equine industry.

This transformative experience is made possible through the generous support and partnership of the Gerald Leigh Charitable Trust.

We received an overwhelming response from our partnership network, with over 30 applicants applying for a placement.. However, due to limited availability, only 10 participants could be accommodated.

The group comprised of individuals from diverse parts of London and varied social economic backgrounds. Several of the young people faced challenges related to SEN such as Autism, ADHD and anxiety.

We have high hopes that this immersive experience will contribute to their long-term self-confidence and personal growth.

The course attendees who are from all parts of London, Essex & Kent

“I would like the experience of working on a yard with a completely different atmosphere and hopefully learning something new from it” Sophie aged 17

Sophie, who began riding horses at the tender age of 4, actively participates in the sport of show jumping. Although she displays a keen interest in pursuing a foundation course related to riding, she has decided to prioritize her academic studies and complete her A’levels before fully committing to it.

“I would love to be a trainer, and i love to be around horses and learn more about them” 

Roxanne is a vibrant and promising young lady, but her journey has been accompanied by challenges, particularly with anxiety.

Nevertheless, I strongly believe that if given another opportunity and with a better understanding of her unique challenges, she would be able to make the most of the opportunities presented to her. With proper support and guidance, Roxanne has the potential to shine and overcome her obstacles.

“I would like to take part to gain a better understanding of the horse racing industry as well as learning how to care for horses. Having the chance to learn how to ride a horse would be incredible and working in a team is also a great opportunity to make new friends. I’ve had an interest in horses when I was younger but I wasn’t able to afford lessons”. 

Jessica’s journey began with a sense of nervousness as she had never ridden a horse before. However, as the days unfolded, her true personality started to shine through, and her remarkable smile lit up the surroundings when she was given the chance to ride for the first time. It was truly heartwarming to witness her confidence grow with each moment she spent with the horses.

Incredibly, we believe Jessica has already completed the ground work application, which is a testament to her dedication and passion for learning about horses. Her willingness to take on new challenges and her evident enthusiasm for the equestrian world make her a bright prospect for the future. We have no doubt that Jessica’s journey in horse riding will continue to flourish, and she will achieve great things in this wonderful pursuit.

“I have been involved with horses for around 5 years. I have been working and learning how to ride with competition horse’s at a working yard. Throughout this time I’ve learnt the basics and am really keen to further my knowledge as I would like to potentially have a career with horses.  My dad and I regularly go horse racing and really enjoy being around the parade ring and I would really like to be involved a lot more!  My great grandad also used to train horses in Newmarket so this experience would be extra special.”  

Despite being one of the younger participants in the group, Lois seamlessly integrated herself and formed strong bonds with her peers. Her deep love and passion for horse riding were evident in the way she wholeheartedly embraced and excelled at all the tasks and responsibilities assigned to her during the program. Lois’s dedication and enthusiasm were truly remarkable, and it was clear to everyone around her that she genuinely enjoyed every aspect of the experience. Her passion and skills in horse riding are undoubtedly a promising foundation for her future endeavors in the equestrian world.

“It’s been my dream since 7 years old to ride and care for a horse.” 

Safkat is a reserved yet remarkably passionate young lady who wholeheartedly embraces challenges and faces them head-on. Not only does she adapt well to her surroundings, but she also forms strong bonds with her peers. While Safkat nurtures the dream of studying law, I sincerely hope she considers giving the horse racing industry a chance as well, as her passion and dedication could lead to great success in that field too. Whatever path she chooses, I have no doubt that Safkat will excel and make a positive impact.

“I would like the opportunity to experience a different side of the horse industry in a professional capacity that I’ve never had the chance to encounter before.  I would also welcome the chance to meet and work with other like minded people who love horses.  It would be a great opportunity for me to practice and improve my stable management skills with the hope to also do some riding.  It would be a fantastic opportunity to help build my self esteem and work on building my confidence”

Robyn’s calm and composed demeanour made her an absolute delight to work with, and she effortlessly got along with everyone in the group, earning her popularity among her peers. Her genuine affection for animals was evident in the way she interacted with the horses, displaying a natural understanding and care for these majestic creatures. Even during the early mornings, she never once complained, showcasing her dedication and passion for the experience.

Moreover, Robyn’s kindness extended beyond her love for animals, as she proved to be a great source of support for one of the girls in the group who faced challenges with anxiety. Her empathetic nature and willingness to be there for others made a significant difference in creating a positive and inclusive atmosphere for everyone.

“I have SEN needs and this would help with my wellbeing and getting out of my house, I really love animals”. 

Chahera proved to be an exceptional young lady who wholeheartedly immersed herself in every aspect of the experience. As an organisation we work to be inclusive and engage young people with SEND, Chahera demonstrated how it can be successful through her active participation. Despite facing some challenges along the way, Chahera tackled them with confidence and determination, ultimately enjoying the entire week. Her resilience and positive attitude are truly commendable, and she undoubtedly left a lasting impression on everyone around her.  We have signposted her to the organisation Autism in Horse Racing and truly hope she pursues this further.

“I love animals and I struggle with my wellbeing, I have always wanted to learn to horse ride as I believe it would be therapeutic for myself”

Upon setting foot inside the British Racing School, Queen’s excitement was palpable, and her enthusiasm was truly remarkable. Despite never having been on a horse before, it was a long-held dream of hers, and she approached it with a natural ability to confidently connect with the animals. Witnessing her passion and potential, we sincerely hope that Queen decides to continue her journey by pursuing the groundwork course. With her innate talent and dedication, she has the potential to thrive and make significant strides in the equestrian world.


Even though Ruby wasn’t initially part of our group, she quickly integrated herself and became an integral member of the team. Her vibrant and lively nature brought a refreshing energy to the group, and her deep passion for horse racing was palpable. Ruby’s enthusiasm was infectious, and her genuine love for the sport was evident in every conversation and interaction she had.

We are delighted to hear that Ruby is all set to start the Foundation Course later this year. With her boundless enthusiasm and dedication, we have no doubt that she will excel in her pursuits and make the most of the opportunities ahead. We eagerly await to hear about her progress and have no doubt that she will achieve great things in the horse racing industry. Ruby’s infectious spirit and passion for the sport will undoubtedly leave a positive impact on those around her.

Feedback Survey

Cute little children playing with ball outdoors on sunny day

Play in the park 2023 – Chigwell, Essex

Join us this summer in the park where we will offer play in the park, its free to attend!

Play in the park is incredibly important for the community on various levels.

Here are some reasons why:

Social Interaction: Parks provide a space for people of all ages and backgrounds to come together and interact. It fosters a sense of community, allowing individuals to connect with their neighbours, make new friends, and build social bonds. Children, in particular, benefit from the opportunity to develop their social skills by engaging in cooperative play with other kids.

Physical Health: Parks offer open spaces and recreational facilities that encourage physical activity. They provide opportunities for people to engage in outdoor sports, games, jogging, walking, cycling, and other forms of exercise. Regular physical activity has numerous health benefits, such as reducing the risk of obesity, improving cardiovascular health, and enhancing overall well-being.

Mental Well-being: Spending time in the park can have a positive impact on mental health. Being surrounded by nature and green spaces has been shown to reduce stress, alleviate symptoms of anxiety and depression, and improve overall mental well-being. Parks provide an escape from the hustle and bustle of daily life and offer a serene environment where individuals can relax, unwind, and rejuvenate.

Family Bonding: Parks offer a family-friendly environment where parents, children, and extended family members can spend quality time together. It provides an opportunity for families to engage in recreational activities, have picnics, play games, and enjoy each other’s company. These shared experiences help strengthen family bonds and create lasting memories.

Community Cohesion: Parks serve as a common gathering place for community events and celebrations. They provide a venue for festivals, concerts, cultural activities, and other community-oriented events. Such gatherings promote a sense of belonging, unity, and pride among community members, fostering a stronger and more connected neighborhood.

Environmental Education: Parks often showcase natural elements, such as trees, plants, and wildlife. They offer an opportunity for environmental education and awareness. Children and adults alike can learn about ecosystems, biodiversity, conservation, and sustainable practices. This knowledge can inspire individuals to become more environmentally conscious and take actions to protect and preserve the natural world.

In summary, play in the park is vital for the community as it promotes social interaction, physical health, mental well-being, family bonding, community cohesion, and environmental education. Parks serve as inclusive spaces where individuals can come together, enjoy recreational activities, and create a stronger, healthier, and more vibrant community.

A man in a futuristic hooded jacket stands on top of a skyscrape

Future Ready Mentoring Project

Future Ready Fund

The Mayor of London’s Sport team, in collaboration with the Violence Reduction Unit, has launched a sport and mentoring intervention program to support young people who are at risk of exclusion or those affected by violence during their transition from primary to secondary education. This initiative is part of the Mayor’s London Recovery missions, which prioritises Building Strong Communities and New Deal for Young People initiatives.

Youth Unity will be providing an after-school sports and mentoring program the Thamesmead area of London for children in years 5 and 6 who are experiencing difficulties or have been excluded from school. The program aims to boost the children’s self-esteem, self-confidence, and engagement with education.

The program will continue when the child transfers to secondary school, with the same trusted adult and activity to help them adjust to their new environment. Community sport coaches will receive training and support from the Mayor’s office, including mentoring, mental health, trauma-informed training, and support for young people with diverse needs. The Skills Builder Partnership platform will play a fundamental role in the success of this program. It aims to develop essential skills in young people to support their educational and career aspirations and positively impact their lives. The program will reflect essential skill development through its practices and utilise the Skills Builder Partnership platform to demonstrate individual progression.

Our experience mentor will be delivering Basketball and sports sessions every Thursday as part of the delivery for this project


Peabody Community Outreach

Youth Unitywill be offering Sports, Music and Support Services to Young People in Thamesmead Moorings area every Thursday evening from 3.30pm

Youth Unity, in partnership with Peabody, is excited to announce a new initiative to provide young people in Thamesmead Moorings with opportunities to engage in sports, music, and receive support services. The initiative aims to promote physical activity, creativity, and well-being among young people in the area.

The initiative will provide young people with the opportunity to engage in sports and music activities. Every Thursday, Youth Unity will bring a van to Thamesmead Moorings where young people can participate in football games or just hang out with the team. Additionally, we will at times bring our van that is equipped with music equipment for those who are passionate about music to learn how to make beats.

To promote well-being and provide additional resources, Youth Unity will also offer a signposting service for both parents and young people in the local area. The service will signpost to support services such as mental health services, housing advice, and employment opportunities.

To ensure the program’s success, Youth Unity has partnered with Peabody, a local community housing association. The partnership is working to provide the necessary resources and support to make the initiative well-supported and sustainable.

If you are a young person in Thamesmead Moorings, come and join us every Thursday to engage in sports, music, and receive support services. Parents and members of the community are also welcomed to come and learn more about the program and receive signposting services.

FotoGenix-UWC-22-6-19-201-1024x684 (1)

Football4Impact Phase 2

FOOTBALL4iMPACT is an international non-profit organisation that uses football (soccer) as a tool for social change. The organisation aims to promote social inclusion, gender equality, and education through football. FOOTBALL4iMPACT has various projects and initiatives, and recently Youth Unity’s, Paul McKenzie was involved with the production and documenting the filming of their amazing project, both in the UK and Genva. FOOTBALL4iMPACT aims to bring together young people from diverse backgrounds and promote unity and social cohesion through football.

Promoting social cohesion is crucial in today’s world, where there is often a lack of understanding and acceptance of different cultures, religions, and ethnicities. Sports, particularly football, have the power to break down barriers and bring people together. By promoting sports among young people and providing a safe and inclusive environment, organisations like FOOTBALL4iMPACT can create a positive impact on society.

FOOTBALL4iMPACT’s initiatives are a great example of how sports can be used as a tool for social change.

To find out more please click the link

The amazing team behind this project –
the students are from Ecolint International School of Geneva

Paul McKenzie who is our Creative Director, was honoured to be invited by the team from FOOTBALL4iPACT,  rather than write about his experiences, just take a look at the filming, as always he managed to capture the energy of all the young people involved whilst ensuring that their voices are heard!

Paul McKenzie’s, who is our Creative Director, was honoured to be invited by the team from FOOTBALL4iMPACT,  rather than write about his experiences, just take a look at the filming, as always he managed to capture the energy of all the young people involved whilst ensuring that their voices are heard!