Top 10 Productivity Tools for the busy youthworker

How productive are you?
i'm sure you do your best but imagine if you had tools to help? here is my top 10 ok 12 tools i use to be productive in youth work and and the tools i share with youthworkers i mentor.

1:Google Drive (docs). its what i'm writing this on and i love it. its simple but has plugins if you want to expand it into an academic tool or need consistency checking. but out of the box its a great tool to write with and its right there in your browser the tool you use most on your computer right?
Drive has file storage and sharing tools too its genuinely my go to tool for writing and storage.

2: Trello is a planning tool way beyond the todo list but not so complex its hard to use. i've done a intro video to trello here. like Gdocs its easy to share and collaborate, and you can even attach files from google Drive, your desktop, or anyplace else. its best feature you can share boards with your team, and young people who are working on planning an event or session.

Lost my password again!

Updated November 2016 : I'm genuinely surrounded by people who can't remember passwords, they have so many and have been told by anyone with half a clue to make the password complicated. The trouble is that means they are hard to remember especially if you have 20 or 30 passwords. sounds a lot? well think about it, email, social media, file sharing, news reader, shopping sites, your probably at 2 by now aren't you? and that's without phone apps. My solution is LastPass its a browser plugin.

Why i love the eink kindle

Dyslexia has been an ongoing issue and i'm often looking for ways and tools  to make life work better, one such tool is my ereader i am on my second kindle my first just gave up charging and is awaiting  it's new life as a potential new monitor for a coder who is trying to hack a e-ink display to use as a command line tool. (he's dyslexic too) my current one is the base model of kindle eink readers i didnt want a backlight or paperwhite display both make reading more difficult for me.


Do Looks Matter?

This activity illustrates the point that people often react based on how they are treated by others. It makes participants aware that if they treat team members with respect that they may be more productive and cooperative.

Create groups of at least 12 people. Create a smaller deck of cards that contains an even amount of each suit so that all four suits will be evenly distributed.

Have each participant draw a card and immediately have the team-building organiser tape it to their backs before they see it.

Human Knot

Make a human knot to build leadership skills. Get everyone in the group together and have them put one hand out and grab someone else's hand. Then have everyone put their other hand out and grab someone else's hand. Their goal is to figure out how to untangle themselves so that they end up in a big circle, without releasing their grips. Leaders will arise when people take charge to help get everyone untangled.

Health & Wellbeing

We have added a new section for youthworkers its our Health and wellbeing resources, We have been advacating on mental health for years now and wanted to provide some resources for youth workers on that and other healthy issues.

If you have something you feel would help youth workers around the globe and want to share it here please feel free to contact YWR via titter @youthworker facebook YouthWorkResources email of contact form on the website

mental health and addiction


american addiction centers reached out to me with some resources arround mental health and addiction we have a number of links to mental health resources and thease links are here for educational perpouses so you cn get a better understanding of mental health. remember to always reach out to professionals when dealing with mental health and addiction. 

On Keeping Quiet and Feeling Alone: A personal story for Mental Health Awareness month of May

by Laura Coward

A few years ago I met with a new personal trainer at my gym. Without any races coming up, I was having trouble sticking to a workout schedule. At least, that’s what I told him. We spent the first 20 minutes of the meeting laughing about the worst workouts/exercises we’ve paid to do, and then we verbally went through my medical history.

“Any injuries?” No. “Heart disease?” No. “Diabetes?” No. “Depression?” Silence.


here you will find documents for you to use and adapt. I will add more as time goes on. If you  have something to add or a better version send it in and i will post it on the site.

Stress and Relaxation for youth workers

Part of our continuing series on mental health: Stress is a serious and debilitating condition that can affect anyone at any time in life. one of the most reported effects of stress is  inability to relax and often disturbed sleep. Youth Work can be a stressful profession and to help combat some of that stress I thought pointing you in the direction of some guided relaxation audio recording and some soothing music would help.

stress and relaxation

Self Image: Mask collage

Mask collage
developed by Ian and Michelle while working at YMCA WSM for sessions in a womens prison.
we were trying to explore the vast contrast between the young women we met and that which they portrayed to the guards and most other people. Like most people but probably more so when imprisoned people wear a mask and the young women we were working with, some of whom were on remand while others were serving time were no different.


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