YAC (Youth Advice Centre) - Crawley - YMCA DownsLink Group

Youth Advice Centre (YAC) Crawley

The YAC (Youth Advice Centre) offers information, advice, guidance, counselling, and targeted youth services for young people aged 11-25 from Crawley and surrounding areas. The YAC is based at the Crawley Foyer building in West Green (Horsham Road, RH11 7AQ).

Our team is made up of a wide range of professionals, including emotional health workers, counsellors, and youth support workers; all our work is young-person centered and young-person directed. Our aim is to provide young people with a safe, friendly, inclusive, and welcoming environment where they can access helpful support and advice.

We are proud to have been awarded The Allsorts Safer Spaces Award recognizing our work to create a safe and welcoming space for LGBT+ young people.

The YAC (Youth Advice Centre) is located at Crawley Foyer on Horsham Road, RH11 7AQ. The nearest major landmark is the ASDA on Pegler Way; the entrance to the YAC is opposite Hallan Cash & Carry. We are a ten-minute walk from the train station or Town Centre for those travelling into Crawley from out of town, or accessible by bus or foot for those travelling from within Crawley. Alternatively, YAC can be accessed on road via the A23.

By Bus: The number 23 METRO bus stops directly outside the YAC, or the Number 1 & 2 buses stop in the town centre, which is a short walk away.

By Train: Get off the train at Crawley Rail Station – then walk ten minutes to the YAC.

By Car: There is no parking for service users at the YAC; please park at Goffs Park Car Park on Horsham Road and walk over the level crossing towards the YAC.


 Support & Advice Drop-Ins (11-25)

Young people can drop-in to the YAC to access same-day support and advice sessions with our friendly Support & Advice workers. Young people can access support and advice for a wide range of wellbeing issues including:

  • mental health and emotional wellbeing
  • physical and sexual health
  • employment & education
  • money, welfare and debt
  • substance misuse
  • exploitation
  • gender & sexuality

Drop-in opening times: 2-6pm

How to access: Drop in or email us at [email protected] to book in a session.


Mind The Gap Emotional Health Support (11-25)

Our Mind The Gap Emotional Health Support service offers up to 6 sessions of tailored directive emotional health support to young people living in Crawley and surrounding areas. As well as helping young people to identify coping and self-help strategies, the support utilizes a social prescribing approach to help the young person identify ongoing support. The support sessions can be delivered flexibly, through either face-to-face sessions at the YAC in Crawley or virtually using Zoom or Phone calls.

The service aims to offer an accessible pathway into support for young people who ‘fall through the gaps’ in other service provision. This may include young people transitioning between services (eg. CAMHS to AMHS), young people who experience barriers to accessing support (eg. Only offered group interventions / not offered face-to-face) or for those who would benefit from support in identifying an ongoing support pathway.

How to access: We encourage anyone who would like to access our Mind The Gap Emotional Health service to speak to a Support & Advice Worker at our weekly drop-in sessions. Alternatively, if you are unable to access drop-in sessions, please email us at: [email protected] and a member of the YAC Team will get in touch.


YMCA Dialogue Counselling (11-18)

YMCA Dialogue offers face-to-face and online support, as well as groupwork, for young people aged 11 to 18 in West Sussex. The team of BACP accredited counsellors provide counselling, low intensity CBT, systemic family work, art psychotherapy and canine counselling.


YMCA Dialogue BAME Counselling (11-18)

YMCA Dialogue have a specific service offer for young people aged 11-18, who identify as Black, Asian and/or Minority Ethnic (BAME) and would like to access counselling sessions with a BAME counsellor. A young person can access support if they identify as BAME and:

  • Are experiencing a mild-moderate mental health issue that would benefit from counselling
  • Have experienced racism/discrimination/prejudice
  • Experience mental health difficulties that are in any way impacted/affected by their heritage/culture/ethnicity/self-identity
  • Would like to access specialist BAME work

How to access: Young people can refer in for both Dialogue service offers using the online referral form: https://www.smartsurvey.co.uk/s/dialogue/

Skills for Life

Skills for Life is a service for young people aged 16-25 living in the Crawley area who might be struggling with making informed decisions, problem solving, effective communication or building healthy relationships. The young people will be offered up to six sessions giving them the opportunity to learn new skills and improve their quality of life through 1:1 and group mentoring.

This service will focus on the five following areas:

  • Money management,
  • Cooking & nutrition
  • Independent travel
  • Self-care & wellbeing
  • Raising aspirations

We support young people with:
Low support needs
The young person mostly feels emotionally well, healthy and is generally managing, but occasional worries may impact on them. They would like to improve their life skills such as money management or setting goals.

Medium support needs
The young person’s daily life has been impacted by issues such as transitional housing, money worries or employment needs. They are starting to experience regular difficulties that could impact their mental wellbeing.

How to access: email [email protected] for more info.


YMCA enables people to develop their full potential in mind, body and spirit. Inspired by and faithful to our Christian values, we create supportive, inclusive and energising communities, where young people can truly belong, contribute and thrive.

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