Young Adults

OSC services can provide care for young people up to age 16 or even 18, if they have a disability, although the majority of services provide care for children attending primary school. Often services find that children in later primary years (6 & 7) are less keen to attend OSC as they are more likely to see themselves as young adults rather than children. We are often told by services that 10 – 12 year olds are bored and less likely to engage with the service. So what can be done?

OSC services should ensure that their service meets the needs of these young adults. SOSCN undertook research with young adults in late primary/early secondary school and we found that their leisure needs were significantly different to that of younger children- they wanted more time to hang-out and chill with friends, or participate in more challenging activities, and they no longer wanted to play in the traditional sense. Their concept of play was different and services need to reflect this; this of course, can be difficult when a service has limited space and must cater for the needs of younger children as well. Some larger services are able to split their provision and provide a separate service for older children and so can provide dedicated activities for the older children. Other services encourage the older children to take more responsibility in the club and have a 'helper role'.

last updated: 07/07/2023