Humza Yousaf, MSP for Glasgow Pollok, visited a Youthpoint service to speak to vulnerable young people at risk of abusing drugs and alcohol, committing crimes, or coming to harm through violent gang culture.
More than a third of children and young people in Glasgow are living in poverty, and the city has the highest rate of young people not in employment, education or training in Scotland.
Aberlour Youthpoint – Glasgow uses the street-work setting to build relationships and open-up opportunities, such as youth clubs, residentials, one to one support, planned activities and programmes, for young people living in areas of high deprivation, crime and drug use.
The service is currently supporting approximately 270 young people across the city.
Mr Yousaf took part in one of Aberlour Youthpoint –Glasgow’s evening shifts, walking the streets of Arden and listening to the concerns of at risk young people.
He said “There is no room for complacency when it comes to tackling child poverty, and early intervention is key. Aberlour Youthpoint – Glasgow provides a vital service for at risk young people living in the area.
“I was keen to accept Aberlour’s invitation to meet some of these young people, hear their stories and see first-hand to help me build a better understanding of the issues that young people in Arden are facing on a daily basis.”
Earlier this year, Aberlour Children’s Charity launched a new campaign – “The Clock Is Ticking” – which aims to raise awareness of the need to support vulnerable young people as soon as problems arise, before the crisis point is reached.
Julie Ross, service manager at Aberlour Youthpoint – Glasgow, said: “We’re currently supporting around 270 young people in some of Glasgow’s most deprived areas, and we were pleased to be able to invite Humza Yousaf MSP to visit the service this week and introduce him to some of the young people we’re currently working with.
“For many at risk young people, a simple intervention from a positive adult role model who takes an interest in them and in their welfare can often be all it takes to bring about positive changes in their lives.
“We know that we need to get in their early to prevent children and young people from suffering.
Julie continued: “This is why Aberlour launched the campaign, The Clock is Ticking, earlier this year, to raise awareness of the importance of early intervention and the need to support vulnerable young people before they reach crisis point.”