Universal Youth Work Proposal

Closed 30 Jun 2020

Opened 16 Dec 2019

Results updated 1 Sep 2020

Consultation Decisions

The consultation has now closed, and the information gathered from participants has been analysed to inform the outcome. The consultation took place between the 18th December 2019 and 30th June 2020. The consultation was originally scheduled to conclude at end of April but was extended until the end of June due to Covid-19 restrictions. 552 responses have been received and analysed.

To support the online questionnaire engagement events took place across the county during January to April 2020. The engagement events were attended by more than 260 people and included children, young people, parents, elected members, members of the community and representatives from Community, Voluntary and Faith Sector.

Additional meetings were also held with representatives from the Community, Voluntary and Faith sector.

A public Webinar was held in June and provided participants the opportunity to ask questions about the proposed strategy. This webinar replaced three public engagement events that were cancelled due to Covid-19.

Young people were also given the opportunity to contribute and share their views during closed group sessions. The findings from the ‘Our Voice Matters Survey’ which was completed by more than 1200 young people has also been used to inform the consultation.

SCC would like to thank all those who contributed to the consultation by attending the engagement sessions, the public webinar, meetings, provided feedback and completed the online survey.

During the consultation more than 60 individuals or organisations have expressed an interest in either being part of delivering services at a youth centre and/or taking on the lease of the centre. All of these services would be delivered at no cost to SCC other than the provision of the building to deliver from. The expressions of interest include opportunities for providing open access and targeted support for young people, increased community use and opportunities for income generation for the lease holder. Each centre has a unique set of interested stakeholders and opportunities, a one size fit all approach would not be appropriate and bespoke arrangements are needed for each centre.

As a result of the consultation it has now been agreed that:

  1. Surrey County Council enables the community, voluntary and faith sector (CVFS) to use the youth centres for the benefit of young people at little or no cost.
  2. Surrey County Council (SCC) acts as an enabler and facilitator of open access universal youth work rather than providing the service directly. The SCC expertise that is valued by residents and in particular young people can then be remodelled to continue to support specific vulnerable groups. The learning from Covid-19 should be used to inform the service design to ensure SCC is able to respond to the needs of young people who would otherwise be vulnerable to poor outcomes.        

Over the coming months we will be working with the organisations that have come forward to either put leases in place or enable them to make use of the centres wherever possible. Our priority is to make sure the centres are first and foremost benefiting young people in the community but there will also be opportunities in some centres for wider community use as the plans for each of the centres are progressed.

We will also be redesigning the services provided by the council that supports the new approach and provides support to young people from particular vulnerable groups.

The full recommendation report and supporting documents can be accessed here:



Engagement Events Webinar

On behalf of Surrey County Council, I would like to thank all those who attended the webinar delivered on the 24th June. that took place in replacement of the 3 outstanding engagement events that were postponed due to Covid-19 restrictions.

Whilst the webinar replaced the engagement events that were scheduled for the Discovery Centre, Ash Youth Centre, Woking Youth Arts Centre and Lakers Youth Centre it also provided attendees with the opportunity to learn more about the proposed strategy and ask questions about any of the youth centres across the county.

If you were unable to attend the webinar, we have provided below the slides used during the webinar to inform you of what was discussed.

Webinar Slides

Consultation Overview

Currently, Surrey County Council provides open access universal youth work that takes place in youth centres across the county. Open access youth work is often provided in youth centres and is open to all young people without referral or a specific need. Whilst there is no statutory duty for SCC to continue to provide open access universal youth work, SCC recognises that the youth centres themselves are a valued community asset and can play a larger role in achieving the Community Vision for 2030 that includes community participation as one of the priorities.

However, Surrey’s Youth Centres are often underutilised and are not fulfilling their potential for the benefit of young people. Surrey County Council is proposing to increase the availability of the existing youth centres for the use of the voluntary, community and faith sector.

We are therefore consulting on whether Surrey County Council should continue to deliver universal open access youth work and how it could enable the voluntary, community and faith sector to use the youth centres at little or no cost.

For further information or to register an expression of interest in any of the venues to provide services for young people, please email: youthcentres.reginterest@surreycc.gov.uk

The full proposal is available here:

Youth Service Consultation - Strategy

The closing date for the consultation is midnight 30 June 2020

Please note the information you are being asked to provide is anonymous data. The responses you provide will be used for the purposes of this consultation and may be used to provide feedback on other consultations occurring at this time.


  • All Areas


  • Young people
  • Parents
  • Teachers
  • Social workers
  • Youth workers
  • Health professionals working with children
  • Councillors, MPs
  • Children with disabilities
  • CSF staff
  • Carers
  • Headteachers
  • Health providers
  • Clinical commissioning groups
  • Children's Centres
  • Employers
  • Care Leavers
  • SCC staff
  • District and borough council staff
  • Voluntary, community and faith sector organisations
  • Adults Social Care staff
  • Social care service users
  • People who use social care services
  • GPs
  • Healthcare providers
  • All Surrey residents
  • Surrey businesses


  • Schools
  • 6-11 year olds
  • 12-19 year olds
  • 20-25 year olds
  • Commissioning
  • Looked After Children and Care Leavers
  • Special Educational Needs
  • Disabilities
  • Parents and families
  • Staff
  • Emotional Wellbeing and Mental Health
  • Safeguarding children
  • Organisations that receive grant funding
  • Health and wellbeing
  • Adult Social Care
  • Social care service users
  • People who use social care services
  • SCC staff