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303 Ormeau Road, Belfast, BT7 3GG
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MACS was established in 1990 to provide a range of services for vulnerable young people aged 16-25 years. In the last 18 years MACS has succeeded in developing an approach which is effective and sustainable. The values and model of the organisation, particularly its approach to user involvement, are at the centre of this success.
The organisation was known as Friends Of Willowfield Association until 1996 when it’s name was changed to Mulholland After Care Services (MACS) in memory of Phil Mulholland, who pioneered after care services for young people in Belfast in the 1980s. Following the introduction of the Children (Northern Ireland) Order (1995) the legislative context in which we had been working changed with fewer young people going into the care system, and therefore fewer care leavers. MACS responded to this change by widening its remit to incorporate vulnerable young people as potential service users.
In partnership with young people and stakeholders MACS has developed a range of projects to meet gaps in service provision. Partnership working is a core element of the organisation’s effectiveness in meeting the needs of vulnerable young people. Committee members and staff have worked hard to develop strong working relationships with statutory, voluntary and community organisations. MACS will develop these relationships in order to add value to its services and activities.
MACS is entering a new and exciting era in its development. In doing so, we intend to consolidate the excellent work already being carried out, as well as embracing the changing legislative, policy and funding climate in which our services are provided. It is imperative that MACS remains strategically relevant and we note in particular the importance of the Children (Leaving Care) Act (NI) 2002, Our Children and Our Young People – Our Pledge. Ten Year Strategy 2005 – 2015 and the Supporting People initiative and the opportunities they present.
The Supported Housing Service (Est.1990) is funded through partnership with NIHE Supporting People and Belfast & South Eastern Trusts. It aims to support young people leaving care (16-25) to make the transition to interdependence and their own tenancy. Placements last around 2 years and all young people are supported through a tailored support plan designed specifically with emphasis on ‘moving on’. We offer 12 placements across 2 sites: 6 placements in single unit self contained flats in South Belfast and 6 placements in single unit self contained flats in East Belfast for young people leaving care.
Macs Mentoring (Est. 2000) is funded through a variety of sources both statutory and charitable. The service works together with vulnerable young people to enable them ‘to realise their potential’ and to nurture their dreams and aspirations. Mentoring is a voluntary relationship that provides support for young people when they feel they are at their most vulnerable, typically in the evenings and weekends when most formal support is not operating. The relationship focuses purely on the needs and goals set by the young person and volunteer mentor. Together they enter into a year long commitment to achieve these goals and most importantly to enjoy building a positive relationship together and having fun!
The Floating Support Service (Est. 2003) is funded through the Housing Executive’s Supporting People programme. We offer flexible, person-centered, holistic services to vulnerable or at risk young people aged 16-25 to enable them to maintain interdependent living in the community. Each young person will have a tailored support plan that addresses individually assessed needs. Our support focuses on ten priority areas that include: emotional and mental health, motivation and taking responsibility, self care and living skills, managing money, social networks and relationships, drug and alcohol misuse, physical health, meaningful use of time, managing tenancy and accommodation and offending.
Wellbeing Support Service
MACS Wellbeing Support Service supports young people aged 11-25 years with their mental health so they can live, dream and succeed.
Have you ever experienced self harm or thoughts of suicide? Do you want to build your confidence, get out and about, meet new people?
You will get one to one support from your worker for up to a year who will help you with:
Building support networks
Meeting new people
Training and employment opportunities
You may also be matched to a mentor who you will meet once a week for 2-3 hours for up to 6 months. Together you can set and achieve goals which may include getting out and about, meeting new people, or trying new things.
All young people will be valued and supported within caring relationships where they can express choice, embrace opportunities, grow safely and fulfil their potential.
MACS provides a range of services adapted to the needs of vulnerable young people aged 16-25, designed to promote opportunities and access to housing, education, health, employment, leisure and citizenship. MACS builds relationships between young people, their families, communities and services. These relationships are based on respect and seek to promote a positive self-image by listening to and valuing the voice of the young person.
For the last 18 years MACS has kept central to its practice, the ethos of interdependence. Interdependence is a realisation that we are all mutually dependent on each other. It incorporates a view of people being able to step outside the prevalent culture of self-sufficiency and independence. We believe that dependence is disabling but independence is isolating. We value the interconnectedness of all people. This has been, and will remain the focal point to project work undertaken with young people. Therefore, the core values of recognising young people as experts, young people as individuals and young people who can work together to realise potential, are the essence of the strategic plan.
MACS Supporting Children & Young People
Belfast, Northern Ireland
£25,000 - £35,000
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