Our Impact - YHAs

providers to shape programming to meet the specific needs of the school and its pupils. *From a sample of 191 young people aged 9-22 years. 2,3 See footnotes ...
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Our Impact A look back at a year of positive change

2015

Impact Review 2014/2015  1

Our best year on record

Contents Our best year on record

1

Transforming young people’s lives

3

The year in numbers 

4

What we stand for 

6

Woods and fields make great classrooms 

8

Research shows young people are benefiting 

11

Fresh air works wonders 

12

YHA Breaks for Kids 

14

Our Summer Camps make a difference 

16

The success of our Summer Camps 

18

Parents also see the benefits 

20

We welcome everyone 

22

Creating opportunities for families 

25

National Citizen Service 

26

Developing life skills through volunteering 

28

How volunteers are benefiting 

31

Equipping young people for success 

32

A year in the life of YHA Castleton Losehill Hall 

34

Exciting new hostels for 2014 

36

More ways to stay with us 

39

An award-winning year 

41

A snapshot of an exceptional financial year 

42

How YHA is governed 

44

Proving the positive impact we make

46

Start making a positive impact with us 

48

Valued partners 

51

And a special thanks to you

52

I’m delighted to be writing this after what I can only describe as YHA’s best year ever in my experience. As I come to the end of my tenure as Chairman, I’m so happy to be able to hand over the reins to my successor with the organisation in such good heart and with its sights firmly set on the goal of reaching out to 1 million young people each year. In the 40 plus years that I’ve been associated with YHA much has changed both at our Youth Hostels and in the way YHA is run. Today we have a highly professional team under an inspiring Chief Executive. We are now closer than ever to reaching a sustainable, fit-for-purpose network. The job isn’t finished and there will always be challenges for any charity, but we have turned the corner. We can now take long-term strategic investment decisions and take on large projects confident that we can make them work.

“I want to thank the volunteers and the staff who tirelessly work for an organisation they passionately believe in.”

However, YHA is far more than buildings. They are just the vehicle for getting people, especially disadvantaged young people, out and about to experience our countryside and historic cities, to taste a spirit of adventure that inspired me all those years ago. Over the past year we have made a positive difference to the lives of thousands of young people; many of them from backgrounds so very different from my own. Finally, I’d like to end on a personal note. Over my years on the Board and as both Vice Chairman and Chairman, I’ve met lots of people who I’ve been proud to show around our Youth Hostels. We’ve had politicians, celebrities and, on several occasions, our Patron, the Queen. But, for me, this is not what I will miss when I retire; it’s the ‘unsung heroes’ who make YHA what it is. So I want to thank the volunteers and the staff who tirelessly work for an organisation they passionately believe in. As you read this Impact Review, it’s my hope that you will catch something of the enthusiasm for YHA that runs through my veins and which has inspired me down the years.

Chris Darmon, YHA Chairman

2  Impact Review 2014/2015

Impact Review 2014/2015  3

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