EVOLVE Work and Learning Support

EVOLVE is based on the conviction that everyone has the ability to change their circumstances and achieve their aspirations.


Our latest calendar of events. You can download it here.


EVOLVE work and learning support is a new floating support coaching service that will be offered by Brighton YMCA from 5th April 2018.  The service will work with adults living in supported accommodation who are ready to take the next step towards  education, volunteering or work.

More on EVOLVE

EVOLVE stands for:  Education, Volunteering, Vocational training and Employment.


BRIGHTON YMCA EVOLVE is a new, psychologically informed environment, designed to support homeless people into, and to sustain work, learning and volunteering opportunities.

Main point of contact

EVOLVE coaches reach out to individuals living in supported accommodation across the City through a variety of ways, such as client and staff meetings, citywide work and learning events, social media, as well as offering varied channels of contact through the Brighton YMCA website, email, telephone, one-to-one appointments and daily drop-in sessions at our main premises in the City centre.

Personalised Coaching Support

Our team of coaches will work with people across the City to pursue, achieve and sustain their work, learning and volunteering goals.

EVOLVE provide a truly personalised strengths-based service, ensuring coachees’ wishes are at the heart of their support and encouraging them to take ownership of their lives. Through flexible and creative approaches, coachees build resilience and embed positive responses to challenges they face on their journey to independence.

Coaching plans, which use SMART goals, will be fully reviewed every 3-6 weeks, as agreed by coach/coachee. They  will work one-to-one and/or in small groups across three levels of provision as follows:

1. Coaching – One hour 1:1 support per week for up to 6 months
2. Enhanced Coaching – One hour 1:1 support per week for more than 6 months for those with multiple/complex requirements
3. Short Term Advice – Short pieces of work/advice/signposting up to 4 1hr sessions to be used within 3 months; referring to either of above as needed

Coachees are supported to access every opportunity to achieve their aspirations through:

·        One to one support both in reach and outreach

·        Varying levels of support to suit individual needs

·        Accompanying coachees to appointments/courses/interviews

·        Facilitated daily drop-in sessions Mon-Friday at our centrally based café hub.

·        Workshops and events on essentials skills, training opportunities, information and wellbeing (or one to one if preferred)

·        Referrals/signposting into citywide services, including existing Brighton YMCA services such as accredited skills for life courses, counselling

·        Proactive development of new and existing relationships with support providers to ensure a seamless and holistic package of support

·        Support to access meaningful activities or items needed, for example: bus fare, clothing, costs towards accessing training/courses identified.

·        Continued, gradually-decreasing support support for 3 months once goal is achieved

·        Quick intervention/re-referral should the coachee require support, for example, during the transition of moving home or changes in welfare benefits.

Café Evolve

Based in 40 North Road, Café Evolve offers a City Centre hub and easy access to advice, guidance and support to access work, learning and volunteering opportunities. Digitally connected, café EVOLVE is a city-centre, welcoming hub that connects clients, peer-mentors, volunteers, coaches and partner agencies for 1-1 advice; as well as access to the café for free hot/cold drinks and volunteering opportunities. Regular facilitated workshops, events and signposting sessions, for example, getting online/IT support, applying for roles, creating a CV, mock interviews and access to clothing/work equipment ensure a motivating and inspiring atmosphere.

What else do we offer?

Counselling – we know that reflection enables real change so we offer access to free counselling to enable and embed understanding of the behaviours and emotions that block change, encouraging coachees to build the resilience to shape their future.

Courses and training – free registration onto accredited courses, events, workshops and activities (including external agencies) facilitated at our award winning purpose built Skills Centre (providing bus fare/travel costs where needed). Our dedicated Work and Learning Supervisor and tutors will give tailored advice and guidance, and will support coachees to participate in whichever course/workshop/events they choose, to suit their individual preferences.

Opportunities to volunteer in a range of positions within our large residential service.

How to refer

1.     Clients and staff can apply directly to the Service Manager – Georgia Leigh

Email: evolve@brightonymca.co.uk (TBC)

COMING SOON – apply via Brighton YMCA website and leaflet

2.     Once an application has been received the client /staff member will be contacted within one week of referral, to arrange an EVOLVE aspiration meeting

3.     Coachees/coaches are then matched within seven days.

4.     Once support ends, coachees can access various informal routes of support, e.g. peer-support, drop-in’s, peer-led social-media groups, or can self-re-refer into the service as needed.

Where else can you find us?

Get in touch with us on Twitter and Facebook!

Read more about us on the StoriSSe blog – featuring outstanding charities through storytelling.