Catherine joined young residents at North London YMCA’s Open Day, to celebrate their business and creative skills and speak out on youth homelessness.
The 157-bed YMCA hostel, in Tottenham Lane, Crouch End provides accommodation to young people who have faced difficult circumstances, may be vulnerable and who are homeless or in urgent housing need.
Catherine said: “We know that homelessness is a massive issue amongst young people in inner London areas and the YMCA is really playing its part providing a safe place for young people, many of whom are facing huge difficulties and challenges. The committed staff at the YMCA are helping them towards a decent future with training, study, jobs and homes.”
At the event, residents performed drama, poetry and songs they had been working on as part of the hostel’s Life Academy skills and confidence-builidng programme.
After the performance Catherine met YMCA resident Liam (above), who was electrifying as Shakespeare’s Othello, and Kirsty (below) who sang and read a powerful self-authored poem, inspired by her own life.
The Open Day also showcased the work of young people involved in the Accumul8 project, which has worked in collaboration with the Crouch End festival and recently featured in the Guardian. Accumul8 runs creative and photographyworkshops funded by making and selling jams and chutneys from donated fruit.
Catherine said: “The YMCA is an important part of our neighbourhood and Accumul8 is a wonderful project. I really hope that it continues to go from strength to strength. All of us who love the Crouch End Festival will be looking out for North London YMCA’s involvement this summer”.