The organisation covers a wide area across Edinburgh with youth work services working in Southside, Holyrood, Old Town and Dumbiedykes areas, and training services working with young people across Edinburgh and the Lothians. Read More
The organisation has grown from delivering specialised services to a small number of young people to an organisation that delivers a broad range of services to a large number of young people. Read More
Get to know...Ruth, our Activity Agreement Coach
Hello and welcome to yet another entry in our little "Get to know..." series. This time, I met up with Ruth, our new Activity Agreement Coach. Ruth has been with Canongate Youth for a few weeks now, so she was kind enough to answer some of my tricky questions. Get reading!
What does your position with CY entail?
"I am the Activity Agreement Coach here in CY. I work within employability so I help young people with anything related to employability. This could be building self-confidence and self-esteem, widening their destination, contacts and community, helping them improve their CV and their interview skills, or anything else, really. I also help run our Drop-In careers service, as well as doing one to one support."
If you weren't in this job, what would your dream job be?
"Well, I'm still studying - I'm currently doing a Masters in counselling - and I think that, ultimately, that is my dream job - working as a counsellor in a school . My undergraduate degree was in criminology, but I quickly steered towards mental health and then got into counselling. I also considered studying primary school teaching, but somehow counselling was something that I was especially intrested in. I previously worked with adults with complex needs as well as with children in schools, and I think I would like to eventually work as a counsellor in a school again as I found it the most rewarding, fulfilling and enjoyable."
What about your new job excited you the most? What were you looking forward to?
"I was especially excited to be working with children and young people again, working in early intervention, and being in a job that's very person-centred. And so far the job's been everything I expected and I've been really enjoying it."
What did you do prior to joining CY?
"As I said, I'm still studying for my Masters - so that's what I did. I also worked in counselling - my last post was in a school in Dundee and I worked as an Inclusion Worker, supporting children from 1st to 5th Year and keeping them in education. I did a lot of CBT, early intervention, and work in mental health."
What do you do on your days off?
"I have quite a few hobbies. I love going to the gym and I also enjoy hiking. At home, I do a lot of cooking and reading. I'm currently reading "The psychopath test" and it's really good!"
What would you do if you won the lottery?
"I would definitely still work - probably part-time, though, as a counsellor. I think we would also buy a second home somewhere abroad. I'd give some of the money away to friends and family to make sure they have everything they need and want. I would travel more. And then save some of it for the potential future kids."
What is your favourite food/restaurant?
"I don't actually have a favourite food - it depends on what I'm in the mood for. I am a huge fan of Mediterreanean food, though. As for my favourite places to eat, I think one of them is definitely Urban Angel in Edinburgh - that's if you're in for some real comfort food. I also like The Parlour Cafe in Dundee."
Tell us something funny that happened to you.
"I seem to have funny things happen to me all the time, but one that comes to my mind is when I went to a Black Eyed Peas tribute gig in Miami and met this 90 years old Cuban man who taught me how to salsa dance. That was a very bizarre and fun experience."
What do you think is your most valuable skill or personal characteristic?
"I think it's my ability to work in a totally person-centred capacity. I am quite good at helping people reflect, and I am also always non-judgemental. In terms of some of my not-so great qualities, well, I'm a total perfectionist. It's not inherently a bad quality, but sometimes it makes my life a bit complicated, and I need to work on not being so hard on myself and not putting myself under so much pressure."
And finally, tell us one random fact about yourself.
"I lived on three continents - I lived in Taiwan, Miami, and ,obviously, Edinburgh."
Don't forget that our Careers Drop-In starts this coming Monday the 23rd of May. It's another one of our Activity Agreement employability services which helps young people work through Stage 1 of employability by helping them with college applications, interview preparations and, for example, CV building.
The Careers Drop-In with take place every Monday afternoon from 3pm until 5pm at Canongate Youth.