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Free to Be Kids

Growing children's emotional health

Youth Worker & Residential Project Coordinator

Deadline for applications: Rolling - likely to close mid-April 2024 but applicants will be interviewed on a rolling basis

  • Dylan's story
    Last year Dylan (aged 9) told teachers that he and his mum had been made homeless and were living in a derelict warehouse with no water, electricity or heating. Dylan’s mum struggled with mental health problems and there were real concerns about neglect. Although they were soon re-housed, Dylan’s school were worried that Dylan’s view of himself was in tatters. He never felt brave enough to answer questions in class, had no friends at school, and when asked what he would like to be when he grew up, answered “someone else”. Dylan came on a Free to Be gateway project this summer. He was helped to feel brave enough to climb the leap of faith, worked in a group to navigate the woods at night, and lay by the campfire telling stories and sharing memories with the other boys in his group - something he would never have felt confident enough to do in school. Now matched to a Free to Be mentor whom he trusts having already met them during the residential, Dylan’s school are thrilled with his progress. He has made new friendships, presents as much more positive, and is doing much better academically.
  • Meena's story
    Meena (11)’s mum struggles with mental health issues. Meena has no contact with her father and her elder brother is in prison. Earlier this year Meena sent a note by text message, saying she wanted to commit suicide. Although attending counselling as a result, she would clam up not feeling able to speak, and school described her as regularly presenting as sad, alone, defiant and angry. Meena struggles with body image, and gets little or no exercise. Mum turned down the school’s offer of group support and school had reached a point where they could no longer cope. Meena agreed to trial coming on a Free to Be residential break in August 2018. On the first night she was too shy to join in a game of tag because she felt the other girls would laugh at her for not being able to run far. By the end of the week, the group cheered her on when she ran with them from one side of the football pitch to the other. It took our volunteers over half an hour to coax her into a kayak, but when she eventually risked it and paddled out into the lake, she was grinning from ear to ear. Immediately afterwards, she asked to phone home and proudly told her mum all about it. At the end of the week, Meena told us she had pushed herself to try so many new things and couldn't believe what she had managed to do. FTI funding would help pay for Meena to return on a year’s worth of follow up projects to build on the progress she’s made so far.
  • About the role:
    This is an exciting opportunity to join our young, ambitious charity and play a key part in the quality of our summer residential programmes for some of London’s most vulnerable children. Your job will be to support the project team throughout our summer season, working in a range of roles, from caring for small groups of 5-6 children throughout their stay, to overseeing the catering on our projects, to eventually working alongside one of our full time staff members to lead a whole week-long project. This will involve managing teams of up to 15 volunteers, to oversee the wellbeing of up to 20 children and young people per project. We are particularly keen to encourage applications from those who can help us represent the lived experiences of our children through their own lived experience or background.

To apply:

Please download the Recruitment Pack below, which includes full details of the application process.

Completed application forms and accompanying documents should be sent by email to 

Our Selection Process and Timeline:

Applications will be assessed on a rolling basis, and we reserve the right to close applications once enough strong applications are received. Selection will be through a two-stage interview. 

The role requires an Enhanced DBS check. Whilst a previous conviction will not necessarily prevent you from joining our team, we would expect you to disclose any convictions or cautions as part of your application, and will ask you specifically about this if you progress through to interview stage. The appointment is subject to references (taken up after offer). We will also need to obtain proof of your right to work in the UK prior to appointment.


If you have any questions about the role, you can contact us by emailing the above address and we’d be happy to arrange a chat over the phone.  We look forward to hearing from you!

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