The Gloucestershire Boys and Young Men Network is a multi-agency network that has been formed to facilitate work with boys and young men, to identify resources and disseminate good practice to organisations and individuals working with boys and young men within Gloucestershire.
The Network provides an open forum, that meets on a regular basis to discuss work, share problems and develop joint working initiatives. The Network particularly targets ‘hard to reach’ boys and young men, e.g. black young men, disabled young men, young men with learning difficulties, gay and bisexual young men, young men in care, young fathers, the homeless and young offenders.
Organisations involved in the Network include; Health Promotion, the Youth and Community Service, Social Services, School Nurses, Mental Health for All, CAMHS ( Child, Adolescent Mental Health Service), Gloucestershire Drugs and Alcohol Service and the Gloucestershire Neighbourhood Projects.
• The Network aims to provide a series of educational workshops around themes identified either by boys and young men themselves, or by those who work with and for them. The Network strives to provide information and resources as well as developing a support structure for workers.
• The Network aims to promote an holistic approach to the health of young men, that includes mental health and well being, sexual health and drug and alcohol abuse. The Network is involved in developing training packages to be used by workers in the county that include sexual health awareness, self esteem and confidence building, and social and personal development.
• It is also the intention of the Network to provide a response to national strategies that concern the health of boys and young men, including the Government's teenage pregnancy strategy and sexual health and HIV strategy, and to remain informed by current research.