The staff of YMCA DownsLink Group’s (YMCA DLG) Guildford Y Centre were pleased to welcome MP Anne Milton for a visit on Friday 11 December to view the Microsoft Youth Hub located there. There are 75 Microsoft-supported Youth Hubs across the country run in partnership with a national charity called UK Youth. The Guildford one benefits the local young people by giving direct access to IT resources and training, equipping them with the skills they need for future employment.
As part of the programme, Microsoft and UK Youth have trained two young people at Guildford Y Centre to become ‘IT Champions’. After being given support to develop their own IT skills, these ‘IT Champions’ can now pass on their knowledge and training to others, especially to those with limited access to technology.
Anne Milton has been a supporter of Guildford Y Centre for many years. During her visit, Anne Milton was given a tour of the building which has undergone several changes over the last year, and chatted to young people using the Youth Hub. She said, “I am always pleased to visit the Guildford Y Centre but it was great this time to get the chance to see the Microsoft Youth Hub in action. It’s fantastic that Guildford was chosen for this initiative and it will be an invaluable way of making sure young people in the area get the skills they need. I know that it’s easy to feel isolated and overwhelmed by the digital world so I recognise the importance of teaching these skills at an early stage, especially for those with limited access to technology. I am sure the Guildford ‘IT Champions’ will keep up their great work and continue passing on their expertise!”
Steve Darken, Guildford Services manager at Guildford Y Centre said, “We’re absolutely delighted that Anne has been able to come and see how we are working with Microsoft and UK Youth to offer even better support to local young people. We work with a lot of young people who aren’t aware of the huge role that IT can play in their lives, and we’re excited that we will now be able to change that with the help of Microsoft. It is so important that we find new ways to support our local community by providing vital computer skills, and instilling a new sense of confidence that might have been lost through unemployment.”