Hold My Hand

Zoe writes about joining our staff team. This post is part of a series of thought-pieces loosely inspired by the music of our youth.

Babies are SO cute! My sister recently had a baby girl and – as biased as I may be – she is just adorable! She was also my inspiration for this blog. As I sat in my sisters’ house holding her as she slept, she overwhelmed me with the simplest of acts – she held my finger.

Now, whilst bursting into tears isn’t an unusual occurrence for me, the whole ordeal got me analysing why it had had such an affect on me, and more so, what it means to hold hands.

Holding hands is typically associated with romance, love and affection. However, holding hands is something that we do throughout our lives with different people and it symbolises many things such as protection, encouragement, comfort and support.

Unfortunately some young people do not have someone to hold their hand as they go through life, and instead have to struggle on their own.

That is why at YMCA Doncaster we offer a space to feel secure, respected, heard and valued.

We try our best to do this for everybody that we come into contact with, but especially for the vulnerable young people we work with – this is our way of “holding hands” with the most disadvantaged of Doncaster’s young people.

At YMCA Doncaster we are a small, friendly, team working in a variety of roles to help those who are less fortunate, with our biggest current project being our Supported Accommodation.

Our Supported Accommodation is designed to be somewhere that our young people can call home, whilst receiving the support they need to tackle the difficulties they face in the community as young people.

We welcome a variety of young people, all with different difficult backgrounds, and we offer a helping hand to get them back on their feet and become more independent.

Do you have what it takes to work either directly with young people, or provide the essential background services to enable YMCA Doncaster to hold young people’s hands through their difficult times and help them build themselves a better life?

If you think so, check out our website for our current job listings.

Or, why not come along to one of our regularly held recruitment information sessions to find out more?

Attending one of our sessions will give you the opportunity to see where you would be working, meet with some of our staff and ask any questions you have about the positions that are available.

Whilst we welcome residents into a Supported Accommodation we also welcome our staff members into a supportive team.

If you are ready to join a team in which you will be valued, respected and supported and no two days will be the same, then YMCA Doncaster could be for you.


Don’t Give Up On Us

Joanne writes about hiring our meeting rooms. This post is a part of series of thought-pieces loosely inspired by the music of our youth.

Many of our older generations have watched Doncaster as it has developed beyond all recognition. Old buildings have been replaced with big shiny boxes as they seek to keep up with the modern age.

For over 160 years, YMCA Doncaster has been part of the heart of our town; here to serve the community and support Doncaster’s young adults. At present, we offer supported accommodation for up to 30 young people and support many more.

We are needed more today than we ever have been; many of our young people would have been homeless, on the streets, or sofa surfing if our accommodation hadn’t been available.

We rely on help and donations from generous local people to enable us to continue on our path, and we hope to be here to provide our services for many more years.

You can do your bit to help us remain a vital part of Doncaster by hiring one of our rooms for your next business meeting.

We rely on the support of local people to use our facilities, to donate to us, and to spend in our charity shop. Every penny we raise goes towards supporting the young people in our town.

We are a stone’s throw from Doncaster’s civic quarter; just a brief walk from the train station and bus interchange.

Our community centre offers a range of rooms available to hire, from a modest board room that will seat 10, to two spacious halls that will seat up to 50 people; all of them are charged at competitive prices.

If you are looking for an affordable venue for your next meeting or training event, we may be able to help.

If you are not familiar with the YMCA, you’re very welcome to visit and look at the facilities we have to offer. Rooms are available as a ‘one off’ or as a regular booking. We can provide a range of equipment, including OH projector, flip charts and stands, projection screens, TVs and videos, and organise buffet lunches for as many as required.

Our small team of dedicated staff will help you plan your layout and work with you to make sure your room is set exactly how you like it. We want you to enjoy your time with us, and we want you to be proud of yourself for helping to support Doncaster’s most vulnerable young adults.

Check out our web page at ymcadoncaster.org.uk/meetingrooms/ or call reception on 01302 342148 to book your next meeting with us.


It’s Flipping Great.

Here at YMCA Doncaster we have been celebrating Pancake Day with our young residents.

We have clouds of flour and batter mix everywhere, sugar is glistening on every surface, and chocolate spread covers every plate.

How many of you remember Pancake Day at home, messing up the kitchen, but more importantly, spending time together?

Many of us remember eating far too much sugar with our siblings, cousins, or friends and it’s a day that children and adults of all ages, have fun.

Today, with thanks to our wonderful supporters, our young residents have been able to come together as one big family, they have spent the past few hours laughing together and enjoying every moment.

Everyone has had an amazing time, but I’m not sure how long it will take to remove the remnants from the ceiling!

Traditionally Pancake Day (Shrove Tuesday) is the last feast before Lent, the 40 day fast on the lead up to Easter.  It’s a time to clear the cupboard of eggs and fats before fasting; if they aren’t in the larder they’re not there to tempt you.

Pancake recipes can be found in cook books dating as far back as 1439, and stories of flipping them date as far back as 1619. 

If you’re not sure how to make them just follow our recipe. 


 Our pancake recipe (makes 8 pancakes)

8oz plain flour

2 large eggs

1 pint of milk (50/50 milk and water makes a lighter batter)

Pinch of salt

Oil to cook.

Toppings of your choice.

Whisk all the ingredients together well and leave it to stand for 30 minutes.

Put a little oil in a frying pan and once it is hot add enough batter to cover the base of the pan. ______________________________________________________________________________

Let it cook until the base of the pancake is golden brown the give the pan a shake to loosen the pancake.


This is the point where we hold our breath and cross our fingers!


To toss the pancake, gently tilt the pan (Give a little shake if necessary) and as the pancake touches the far side, use your wrist only to quickly flick the pancake upwards.

When the other side is golden slide it onto a plate.

Now top it with whatever takes your fancy.

If you think you have what it takes to work with our young residents, follow this link and find out what jobs we have to offer ymcadoncaster.org.uk/job-vacancies-in-doncaster/


I Believe I Can Fly

Zoe writes about the difference our work makes to young people in Doncaster. This post is part of a series of thought-pieces loosely inspired by the music of our youth.

“I belieeeve I can flllly, I belieeeeve I can touch the skkky!…” we’ve all been here before – whether in the shower, in the car, cooking our dinner or simply just walking down the street – we’ve all found ourselves singing our hearts out to I Believe I Can Fly.

I recently found myself testing out my lungs and singing the lyric “If I can see it, then I can do it, if I just believe it, there’s nothing to it”.

Now, Buzz Lightyear has taught us that this doesn’t necessarily mean that if we believe we can physically fly that we will. But it occurred to me how amazing it would be to be able to say that you really believe in yourself, and to believe that you are capable of achieving whatever you put your mind to.

Unfortunately, for a number of different reasons and in a number of different ways, many people do not feel as though they are good enough.

There is a pressure within society to be, act and look a certain way and this pressure can overwhelm people’s ability to believe in themselves. Many people are affected by such pressures, but particularly young people who are trying to find themselves and become young adults in a world in which they don’t feel they fit in with.

A lot of young people do not have anybody in their lives to believe in them – making it near impossible for them to believe in themselves.

That is why at YMCA Doncaster we are here to speak out for young people and help them find strength in their own voice. We provide the support that young people need to succeed, and we always strive to inspire everybody that we meet to realise their full potential.

We do this through our Supported Accommodation, which ultimately helps young people to re-build their lives – starting with a safe place that they can call home. Our support team also gives our residents someone to turn to when life is difficult – it gives them somebody who can believe in them, to help them to believe in themselves.

YMCA Doncaster is an independent charity and we have to find the funds to be able to provide our services to the young people of Doncaster. We wouldn’t have been able to do as much as we have so far without the support of the public and your generous donations -so thank you.

We need your help to continue our work with the vulnerable young people of our town and to be able to further our work within the community to help even more young people.

Can you help us make this happen? Can you help a young person believe they can fly?

If you would like to support our work then please donate today. There are many way you can get involved from fundraising events to food parcels – check out our website for details on all of the ways you can help.

You can also read our clients’ stories to see just how much of a difference your donation can make.


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