18 August 2021

So many things have changed for us during the pandemic, including the way that we use our buildings and spaces.

One of our biggest changes has been taking an old shop, previously let out as a newsagent’s, and adapting it for use in our work with young people.  We have been able to transform the space from a shop full of all sorts of shelves and other fittings, to a stripped-back shell and then into a place for meetings and activities.  Having a self-contained activity base means that we’ve been able to run small groups with social distancing throughout.

As part of the transformation, young people who live at the YMCA set to work on the décor.  This includes a chalkboard for everyone to leave their mark, and a huge mural designed by Doncaster College art student, Euan Grimes.

Euan has enjoyed art from being a child, particularly as it is something that he felt good at doing.  In planning the mural, he wanted to make sure that it included as many of our future activities as possible – so his research stage was crucial.

Having the chance to make something on a big scale was a great opportunity as Euan’s designs are usually much smaller sketches – but what a chance to start from a completely blank wall and create something that everyone who uses the space can enjoy!

Being able to design a project and see it through with genuine ownership has been really empowering for Euan.  His next step is a level three course at the college, starting September, and we’re all looking forward to seeing his future creations.