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#ShareAStory: MAPS and its vulnerable young people

Like everyone, MAPS (Mentoring, Advocacy & Peer Support) have had to change the way we work during covid and how we support the young people funded by GamesAid. The impact of working online is stretching our limited technical resources as we have had to buy & loan kit so we can keep in touch with our vulnerable young people. Funding is key, funding is low and with more funds we could reach more young people.

On our project as a whole 43% of these young people have parents with mental health issues, 50% of their parents have suffered from domestic violence and 28% of their parents misuse substances.  A quarter of the young people we are working with are sadly self harming.  Our worry is that these families and young people become hidden during lockdown and it is imperative for safeguarding that we MAPS keep our weekly catch ups.

Face to face time is still out of the question but our incredible volunteer mentors are honouring the year long mentoring commitment they made to their young person and still meeting up by video calls or via the phone.
Sally, a mentor and Jake are carrying on their mentoring sessions online, they are chatting, playing Uno and their relationship is getting stronger and stronger. Jake has told us that he feels just as supported by MAPS during covid as he did before which is wonderful.
Several of the children we are working with suffer with high anxiety and don’t like leaving home under normal circumstances and despite everything that is going on they are happy to be at home all the time.  In some of these cases the relationship between the volunteer mentor and their young person is getting stronger and deeper, we feel this is due to the young person being more relaxed and comfortable in their own home and opening up more but we know when lockdown ends this group of young people will massively struggle with the transition and their mentor will be needed more then ever.
MAPS are stepping up to the challenge of Covid 19 to make sure our young people stay safe!