Healthy bodies, healthy minds: The impact of youth work in building healthier, happier communities

Explore how youth work initiatives are enhancing the physical and mental health of young people across Scotland.

Youth work is essential in promoting the health and wellbeing of young people, offering a range of initiatives and activities designed to support their physical, mental, and emotional health. Through youth work, young people gain access to vital resources and support networks that help them lead healthier, more balanced lives.

Youth work takes a holistic, person-centred approach to health, addressing various aspects of wellbeing including mental health support, physical activity, and emotional resilience. A national evaluation revealed that 86% of young people participating in youth work reported improved health and wellbeing. One young person shared: “Being involved in youth work has helped me feel more positive about myself and my future.”

In addition to structured programs, youth work provides informal opportunities for young people to connect with peers and mentors, reducing feelings of isolation and fostering a sense of community. These supportive relationships are crucial in helping young people navigate the challenges of adolescence and build strong foundations for their future.

By prioritizing health and wellbeing, youth work not only enhances individual outcomes but also contributes to the overall health of our communities, ensuring that young people have the tools and support they need to thrive, both now and in the future.