When Melanie, one of our Support Training Enterprise Programme (STEP) trainees, fell pregnant at 16, school was the last thing on her mind. Nobody in Melanie’s family had finished secondary school, so nobody questioned her when she decided to stop attending.
When her son Tyler came along Melanie had to grow up very fast and she quickly became an excellent mother, even though she was going it alone. When Tyler was two years old Melanie was looking at some of her friends completing their Leaving Certificate and moving on to third level education, meeting lots of new people and making plans for the future. She felt stuck. She wanted the best for Tyler and knew continuing her education was key to making his life everything she wanted it to be.
One of Melanie’s cousins told her about STEP in YMCA Dublin. The programme provides 10 young people per year the opportunity to gain a FETAC Level 4 Certificate. This certificate then allows those young people to apply to third level education and also gives them a good base for entering the workplace. Melanie showed us she had the drive and the commitment needed to deserve a place on the programme and has been thriving in her first couple of weeks.
€30 could pay for a week’s worth of healthy breakfasts for our participants. Although the importance of eating a good breakfast is emphasised in the programme, some trainees come to STEP on an empty stomach. Having a breakfast available to them will give them the energy they need to concentrate without them having to budget extra on their small income.
€100 could cover the cost for one of our young people to attend a Team Building trip to support their personal development and reward them for all of their hard work and attention throughout the year. Patience, Confidence, Teamwork and Communication skills are key attributes the young people come away with following such a trip and for some young people this would be their first trip outside of Dublin.
With their support and continued commitment towards me I achieved far more than I'd ever thought possible. I can't thank them enough.
€250 could pay for additional training for a participant. FETAC Certified Occupational First Aid and Manual Handling training are sought after by employers and our programme currently does not include these modules. Having the most up to date training will give the trainees the edge over other candidates when applying for employment on completion of STEP.
You can donate online here, post a cheque to the below address or pop in and we would be delighted to show you around the services.
The young people using our services are choosing to take their education, and their futures, seriously. You can help them to make the most of their time on the STEP programme. You can support their journey.