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27 March 2020    |    Uncategorised

Y Community Garden

Garden Project

How our dream has turned into a reality ! 

In 2018, we carried out a public consultation with over 80 people asking:

‘what would you like to see within your local community?’

Participant included; Auchmuty Community Connectors, YMCA residents,  neighbours and local individuals and families.

Results from the consultation concluded that local individuals wanted:

  • Help to get active – the barriers such as costs and travel to be removed
  • To have the opportunity to learn new skills such as DIY and gardening
  • To have local community volunteering opportunities available to them
  • Local amenities to be improved for themselves and their children

We are therefore proud to announce that funding received throughout 2019-20 from the National Lottery Community Fund, as well as additional funding from Fife Environmental Trust, Fife Council and Cycling Scotland has now helped turn this dream into a reality!

After a lot of planning, works officially commenced in January 2020. Over the coming months the garden will be transformed into a space that can be enjoyed by the local community, one which will also improve the quality of lives of YMCA residents and individuals and families.

Opening in summer 2020, the new community garden will:

-Improve health and mental well-being for the community with free access to an outdoor gym


-Involving local volunteers to help YMCA residents grow food and plants in raised beds


-Holding DIY classes and gardening workshops to build skills and increase confidence


-Combat social isolation by creating space where people can socialise and children can play


-Encourage people to reach their full potential through volunteering opportunities


-Encourage environmental awareness through education and increased recycling facilities






Kris' Story

The YMCA is amaxing

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to have deeper discussions about their attitudes towards alcohol.

The project, funded by the Scotch Whisky Action Fund, takes a youth-centered approach – enabling young people to take full ownership of the design, delivery, and evaluation of the programme.

Through digital workshops, young people have created a series of virtual reality scenarios that will allow users to explore issues such as peer pressure, underage drinking, and risk-taking.

Darran Gillan, Youth and Programme Development Manager at YMCA Paisley, said:

 “Meaningful conversations about alcohol can be difficult to initiate, virtual reality provides a great starting point for those discussions. Young people are talking about things they would not otherwise share in a youth club setting. 

The immersive scenarios allow young people to see the dilemmas and challenges that others have experienced before them – in that sense, it’s a very effective preventative tool.

Having a completely youth-led project means that the scenarios come from young people’s lived experiences – that’s what makes this project impactful.”

18-year-old Jake, who was involved in developing the VR scenarios, said:

“We created a VR house party project to address the issue of underage drinking. For many young people, binge-drinking is a rite of passage and we wanted to raise awareness to the fact that this can leave them extremely vulnerable. Social media also plays a big part in peer pressure and it can be used to shame people. This project engages deeply with all these issues with scenarios that come from our shared experiences.” 

In the next few months, the young people from Paisley YMCA will bring this interactive programme to schools and youth clubs throughout Renfrewshire.


My story


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