CYO is a community of people working together to support schools in the pastoral and spiritual care of their pupils. A few of us are employed by CYO, others partner with us and many volunteer their time regularly or occasionally.
Tim started many years ago as schools worker and now leads the team. With a particular interest in mission, culture and the gospel, Tim creates meaningful opportunities for young people to explore their spirituality and the Christian message for themselves. He is now also part of the Prayer Spaces in Schools national team, helping to train and equip others around the country.
Beks has a Master’s Degree in Youth and Community Work and Applied Theology and has previously worked with two churches and mentored students at the local high school. She now works as a chaplain at the Sixth Form College and at Colchester Institute where her youth work skills and previous life experiences are a real asset to CYO and to the young people, schools and churches we work with.
Hannah has a degree in Education and Early childhood development and came to CYO after three years as a Youth and Community Pastor and chaplain in a secondary school. Hannah is chaplain in two schools and heads up the Beloved project, leading the course in secondary schools and helping with the development of a version for primary schools.
So much of the impact of CYO is down to the time and skills that many volunteers bring to our work in schools and to helping us in other ways.
Could you offer some time to help support or inspire a young person in school, or to help us behind the scenes to keep CYO running smoothly? That could be anything from an hour or so when you can, through to a commitment to offering a couple of hours each week during term time.
Helen has a degree in Youth Work and Theology and over ten years experience of work with young people including youth leadership, mentoring, one-to-one, group work, self-esteem courses, school workshops, prayer spaces, youth clubs, outreach programmes and detached youth work. Helen has a real passion for working with young people and enjoys coming alongside as they face the challenges of life whilst chasing their hopes and dreams.
Susan volunteers her time to oversee the CYO Primary Schools Network which supports Christians working in Primary Schools, whether as staff or visitors. With experience of curricular input, hosting church visits and running prayer spaces, Susan helps us with training events, network gatherings and by writing a regular news email for all those working in primary schools.
Gill has a degree in Education and Religious Studies and has worked as a primary school teacher and a primary music specialist. She is passionate about enabling young people to explore their spirituality through creativity. Gill is an Accredited Teacher of Godly Play and is experienced in leading and facilitating Prayer Spaces in primary schools.
Jane is the one who keeps our finances in order having previously worked at CWR’s Waverley Abbey House as Course Administrator and Registrar. Jane keeps herself busy with a variety of activities including home study groups, music, running Alpha courses and leading Marriage Encounter weekends with her husband who is a local vicar.
As a charity, CYO is overseen by a board of trustees drawn from different churches in the Colchester area each of whom brings valuable skills and experience.
Chairman of the Board
Our Patron is Rt. Revd. Roger Morris, Bishop of Colchester. Work among young people has always been a high priority for Roger. Having been the founding chairman of a youth club in Gloucestershire he has since pioneered a number of activities including a successful busking project with school students. Roger manages The Canopy Stage at the annual Greenbelt Festival and acts as an advisor to a number of youth projects nationally.
Bishop Roger Morris
HOW WE DO IT
Here are some of our recent projects. These are only possible thanks to the practical help offered by many volunteers and the gifts of our wonderful supporters. If you would like to find out more about how you could help with any of these projects do get in touch. If you’d like to support our work, please click on the “Donate” button above.