How we help

Fantastic Mr Fred

Fred is 8 years old and has a progressive eye condition which may eventually cost him his sight. Before that day, Fred’s mum Karen is helping him fulfil his bucket list of experiences which he has named Fantastic Mr Fred’s Flight For Sights, in honour of his favourite book, Fantastic Mr Fox.

YHA has made book-mad Fred’s dreams come true –  by going on an adventure like the Famous Five and find treasure and fossils. Fred and his family experienced a holiday at YHA Boggle Hole, on the coast of North Yorkshire.

The two-day break was provided by YHA’s Family Breaks programme. The programme was launched earlier this year to support children and their families and provide them with the opportunity to access positive life changing experiences, creating memories that last a lifetime.

Fred and his family had the opportunity to stay at YHA Boggle Hole, which is nestled on the beach in an old smugglers’ cove where he went fossil hunting during his stay.

Watch the video to see what Fred and his family got up to during their stay.

Adventure for all

We know what it is like to paddle in the sea for the first time, to see the city skyline at night and to feel the sand between your toes.

At YHA we believe that every young person should have the opportunity to travel to a new place, learn vital life skills and discover new environments.

We also know that for children caring for a disabled parent, coming to terms with the loss of a sibling, those without a home of their own and for those facing relentless treatments, a break is just something they couldn’t imagine. We can support these children and their families to access positive life changing experiences, creating memories that last a lifetime.

Perranporth Young Carers

We gave 20 young carers a free break to YHA Perranporth. Much more than a holiday from their responsibilities, this respite trip gave these young people from a deprived area the opportunity to enjoy the outdoors, learn to surf and spend time with peers who know exactly what they’re going through. Crucially, these precious few days away brought happiness and hope for the future.

Youssif, who has cared from his mum since he was five, said “It has been an amazing, refreshing experience. It’s allowed me to relax and be myself around people on the same wavelength.”

Cuts to youth provision in their area mean that these young people simply would not have been able to take this break without YHA and the generosity of our supporters.

Because of this trip, these young people had taken more exercise, improved their communication skills and reported greater wellbeing.

With your help, we can transform the skills, perspectives and futures of more young people.

Happy times at YHA Cheddar

Earlier this year, a group of young people with additional educational needs enjoyed an unforgettable trip to YHA Cheddar. For many, it was their first night away from home. The experience improved the children’s confidence and self-esteem, they built relationships and learned life skills that will lead to greater independence. Here’s the story of Pitcheroak School’s time away with YHA.

Chelsey’s story

Serious injury or medical illnesses such as cancer, can be very traumatic and life changing for adults, let alone for young people. At just 14 years of age, Chelsey was diagnosed with cancer and had to undergo some invasive surgery, as well as aggressive radio and chemotherapy sessions. In addition, she lost two thirds of her right leg muscle and her feet suffered painful nerve damage. It is against this backdrop that she happened on an opportunity to gain particular support with her difficult journey of recovery.

Working with our partner Climbing Out we delivered a five day residential outdoor activity programme which helps rebuild confidence and self-esteem post injury or illness.

We support young people to attend the week taking part in a wide range of outdoor activities including climbing, kayaking, gorge scrambling and hill walking, all of which are bespoke to the needs and capabilities of the young people.

Apart from the sense of enjoyment and achievement taking part inspired, these trips have helped Chelsey form new friendships.

YHA can help more people like Chelsey if you choose to make a contribution.

Apply for support

If you are, or you know of, a family or young person experiencing challenging circumstances, YHA can offer supported breaks.

Find out more and apply for support here.