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How to become a Youth Worker

Youth Worker
avg. starting salary

Think you’re down with the kids*? You should become a Youth Worker… Youth Workers provide guidance and support for young people aged 11-25, helping them to reach their full potential, and improve their social, personal, and emotional development. Their role could involve anything from planning and managing community events and educational activities, to running counselling sessions for those struggling with bullying, health problems, or crime. And whether they’re based at a college, school, or youth centre, a Youth Worker’s duty is not only to mentor and coach young people, but also to ensure they feel supported in their individual situation. Typical duties for a Youth Worker could include:
  • Organising events and activities
  • Initiating and undertaking projects that are both fun and educational
  • Encouraging participation and involvement
  • Providing advice, support, and counselling
  • Recruiting, managing and supervising volunteers
  • Creating reports and business plans to encourage funding
  • Working with police, schools, parents, and other community groups
  *If you have ever used this phrase, you are definitely not down with the kids

Excellent communication skills, combined with a genuine concern for young peoples’ wellbeing, are essential traits for anyone looking to become a Youth Worker. Because of the often sensitive nature of the job, you’ll also need to demonstrate high levels of tact and empathy with everything you do. After all, there’s a time and a place for tough love – and errors in judgement could cause unnecessary drama and/or tears. That doesn’t mean you don’t need to be strong though. Young people also require a leader with patience, tolerance, and lots of resilience… You will also need to show:
  • An ability to build relationships with young people
  • Maturity and discretion
  • A responsible attitude
  • Enthusiasm and a talent for motivating others
  • A fair and non-judgemental approach
  • An ability to relate to young people


Junior Youth Worker

Up to £25,000

Youth Worker

Up to £30,000

Youth Service Manager

Up to £40,000

"Even if it does sometimes test my patience (kids will be kids), being a Youth Worker is super fun. It mostly revolves around organising and taking part in a range of activities, projects, and programmes designed to boost young peoples’ confidence and help improve their overall development. Aside from being able to make a difference to people’s lives, I also get to play sports, do arts and crafts, and even put together drama performances – who else gets to say that about their jobs? And although it can be hard to build trust, especially if they’re going through a tough time – I find that trying to see things on their level always helps to get through to them in the end. Even if I am sometimes the ‘uncool adult’ who has no idea what the newest snapchat filter is…"

Get qualified

All Youth Worker jobs