I really love being able to encourage and support young people in a creative way.

Justine began working as our Arts and Wellbeing Officer in April 2021.

Born and bred in Doncaster, Justine is very familiar with YMCA Doncaster as she was previously on our team when she was in her 20s (welcome back Justine!).

Her role mainly consists of facilitating a range of arts sessions for 5 to 25-year-olds in order to promote positive wellbeing. So you’re likely to find her elbow deep in paint or leading groups of teenagers in drama workshops.

Why is she in this role? Well, Justine is particularly passionate about her job as she herself was one of the young’uns who benefited from performing arts sessions at YMCA Doncaster many moons ago. “My time at YMCA Doncaster gave me key skills, experience, aspirations and a faith that have helped me throughout my life. So it felt right that I might be able to provide opportunities for future young people stepping through our doors.” She knows that experiences with art can boost confidence in children, as it did for her: “winning a poster competition and having a poem published when I was in primary school really improved my wellbeing.”

Ever since her first job washing pots at an Italian restaurant and throughout her time as Course leader and teacher of acting and musical theatre in Doncaster College, Justine has never shied away from hard work. In fact, she loves it: “I really don’t mind getting my hands dirty.”

And how’s this for a fun fact? Justine was nicknamed “Milky” at school because her friends thought she looked like the Milkybar kid (from the adverts). But later, she ended up teaching the actor who played the Milkybar kid – what a coincidence!

If you’d like to join us in our efforts to have a positive impact on the vulnerable young people of Doncaster, then take a look at our current vacancies