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We believe that every young person should have someone that they can trust. 

That is exactly what YMCA Mentoring programmes provide for 360 young people across Scotland. A local trained volunteer is matched with a young person who they meet with every week, developing a positive relationship and providing guidance and support through everyday challenges.


The award-winning Plusone™ mentoring programme works with young people aged between 8 and 14, who are on the verge of entering the criminal justice system.

YMCA Plusone™ Mentoring is recognised as a best practice early intervention programme with proven success in reducing re-offending in young people.

Currently being replicated across Scotland the programme achieves 86% of young people significantly changing their behaviour and attitudes (Evaluation: Dundee University, 2011).


Youthworks mentoring is a YMCA Scotland mentoring support programme for young people aged 16 -25 engaged in short term employment training programmes including Community Jobs Scotland.

The programme helps young people develop the confidence and resilience they need to sustain employment.

Young people acquire essential skills for their working lives such as emotional intelligence, problem solving and decision making.

The YMCA is increasingly called upon by secondary schools to provide mentoring.

Youthworks Mentoring supports 160 young people a year in 8 locations across Scotland: Aberdeen, Glasgow, Perth, Renfrew, Dumfries, Orkney and the Isle of Lewis.

As well as mentoring, an important aspect of YMCA’s approach is to build relationships with various employers so they better understand some of the barriers young people (particularly marginalised) face and how the workplace can become more accessible.

Modern Apprenticeships

Every year, we work with 60 Modern Apprentices from NHS Lothian.

96% of young people on YMCA programmes report improved employability outcomes, sustained Modern Apprenticeships or new qualifications related to their employability.

The Y’s Girls mentoring programme

The Y’s Girls mentoring programme matches trained volunteer mentors with young women aged 9-14 years old to support them to be their best.

Y’s Girls is an early and effective mentoring initiative that aims to prevent young people developing mental ill health by having a stable adult role model and accessing pro social activities. Designed by YMCA Scotland the programme is delivered across the four nations of the UK with the mentors being trained and supervised by their local YMCAs.

The programme is supported centrally by YMCA England and Wales


Over a 12 month period, the mentors and young people meet regularly and work together to identify achievable goals that will empower the mentee and build their resilience to enable them to lead fulfilling lives.  The sessions offer an informal environment with the opportunity to discuss anything that might be worrying them, from family and personal relationships to lifestyle and education.

For more information https://www.ymca.org.uk/ys-girls