YMCA WiSE – Children & Young People

Why would I need a YMCA WiSE worker?
At YMCA WiSE we want to help children and young people stay safe in their relationships.  We want to make sure that you are safe and know how to recognise an abusive relationship or situation.  We do this by offering one to one support; someone to listen to you, make sure your voice is heard, talk about things like consent, self esteem, pornography, online issues, healthy relationships and grooming.  We can also help you access other services that you might need, like housing, drugs and alcohol services, sexual health and contraception.

We’re not police or social workers; we are independent and no one can force you to work with YMCA WiSE.  When we first meet you we will talk you through our information sharing policy.  That’s the bit where we say that we won’t share the details of what we talk about with anybody else unless we have your permission, or we feel that someone is at risk of harm (either you or someone else).

Are you or your friend:
• Feeling pressured into doing things you don’t feel comfortable with?
• Running away from home/care or not being where you should be, like school?
• Offered money, alcohol, drugs, lifts, somewhere to stay or other gifts in exchange for sexual favours?
• In a relationship with someone who tries to control what you do, who you see, how you spend your money, where you stay or other aspects of your life?
• Being threatened, intimidated, manipulated or forced into sexual activity with your boyfriend, girlfriend or other people?
• Meeting random people online and sharing lots of information or pictures?

If the answer is yes to any of these then we want to hear from you – either by phone, email, facebook or using our contact form on this website.  Sometimes this is called sexual exploitation.  It doesn’t always happen in the same way.  Sexual exploitation can happen to both boys and girls and the person exploiting you can be of any age and could be male or female.  Have a look at these videos to see some examples of what we mean:

Me, Jenny and Kate


If you feel forced, threatened, blackmailed, manipulated or tricked into any type of sexual activity then even if you said “yes” you cannot consent to sexual activity.  This is because you didn’t feel that you had a choice.  Consent means having the freedom and capacity to choose.  And you also can’t consent to sexual activity if you are under the influence of drugs or alcohol.  It doesn’t matter if you are over the age of 16.  This is important to remember if someone is pressuring you to have sex or if you want to have sex (or any other sexual activity) with someone else.

Here are 2 videos that help explain it:
Consent – Just Like Tea!

Laci Green – Consent 101

Sharing sexual texts, photos of videos might seem pretty common but there are a few things worth knowing.  The most important thing to do if something has happened is to talk to an adult you trust.

So you got naked online?’ talks through sexting, what it is, what to do if you’re worried about something you’ve shared (whether deliberately or accidental), and what you can do to keep safe online.

CEOP (Child Exploitation and Online Protection Centre) can also help:

Exposed by CEOP