Fred Milson: Why am I a youth worker? An examination of the goals and motives of youth workers

Picture: Fred Milson - sourced under an open government licence

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Fred Milson (1972) argues that youth workers properly have several goals and motives, and that a hierarchy of purposes appears. The motive and goal that should be given first priority is for individual personality development – but this has to be fulfilled in social relationships and community involvement.

contents: preface · i. the purpose · ii. the goals · iii. the motives · iv. summary · references and notes · how to cite this piece
When he wrote this pamphlet Fred Milson was close to the height of his fame and influence. He was a Principal Lecturer at Westhill College, a former member of the Youth Service Development Council (chairing the sub-committee on youth work that contributed to the report: Youth and Community Work in the 70s), and had already written a number of influential books. Why am I a Youth Worker was popular and was reprinted a number of times.

links: Fred Milson and the making of youth and community work · Youth and Community Work in the 70s (The Fairbairn-Milson Report) · Methodism and youth work · The Albemarle Report

I. The purpose

[page 1] Few people realize the size of the army of voluntary and part-time youth workers in this country. For example, they outnumber the total paid-up membership of the three main political parties. Nobody will ever be able to estimate the amount of good they do: certainly theirs is a major contribution to the personal and social development of many thousands of young people: Britain would be immeasurably poorer without their efforts.

Yet like any other group of people, they are not perfect: their work could be vastly improved. In this booklet, we are concerned with what, in the experience and opinion of the writer, is one of their major deficiencies and hence a possible growth point. Many of them are found not to be clear about the goal and purpose of their work and thus of their motive in undertaking it.(1) In the assessment interviews after Bessey training, students are likely to find most perplexing the two related questions, “What is the purpose of youth work? Why are you a youth worker?” Years ago, two social researchers in a youth club asked these questions of a hard-working, devoted leader. He was genuinely perplexed and called out to his colleague in the next room, “Eh, Bob, why do we do this work?”

There will be those, of course, who argue that in a sense it is not necessary to have a purpose: it is enough to get on with the job and see what develops. There are others who will press the matter further and maintain that – purpose is likely to rob the encounter, between older and younger people, of its spontaneity: and indeed that if the youth worker has a purpose in mind, he is likely to behave like a dictator or an authoritarian teacher.

To answer this last objection, it is necessary to clear up one possible misunderstanding. By “having a purpose” we do not mean somebody who is always thinking about his purpose: such become bores and prigs. All human relationships are ruined when either party is constantly self-conscious about a purpose: he cannot then “give” himself to the other. Rather we mean that in a quiet moment when he is reflecting upon his activity or when he is planning, he knows what is his biggest long-term objective. The goal of a nurse is to help sick people: this over-riding purpose makes sense of many disparate duties that she undertakes: but she is not forever self-consciously thinking of her purpose whilst she goes about her duties: the goal lies in the background and informs all that she does: if you asked her, she could tell you why she is a nurse. By contrast, an improbable story tells of the reply of the railway worker. He was tapping the wheels of a stationary train and a passenger looked through the [page 2] carriage window and asked, “I’ve often wondered why the wheels are tapped at stations: what are you doing ?”. “I’ve done this job for twenty five years, but nobody has ever told me why I am doing it.”

Much as I admire many youth workers, I am bound to say that some of them remind me of that wheel-tapper. They devote long hours to the service, perhaps even to the neglect of their own families, but they are not clear about the object of the exercise. Youth work in Britain to-day suffers severe loss through aimlessness: it is among those many enterprises which are only human, dignified and sane if they have a clear purpose closely tied with motivation. [page 3]

II. The goals

For most of the things we do, there are several goals and hence as we say, we have “mixed motives”. A man marries a particular girl because he wants supremely to make that one girl happy: but he also wants to satisfy his biological urges in a socially-acceptable way: he wants to be a father: he cannot be happy without that girl: he wants to get away from his own home. A man goes to work to earn money, but he will be wise to choose a type of employment which will give him job satisfaction, for example one that is suitable to his gifts and inclinations. Despite the popular prejudice, there are those who put fulfilment above pay: they have concluded that “life is for living”.

Before turning to youth work, it may be worth trying to do a little straight thinking about goals and motives. Consider the following propositions.

1. In most things we attempt, we have several goals and several motives.

2. But among these will usually be a primary goal and a main motive. This may well be revealed by the choices and decisions we have to make. A man goes to work for money, for job satisfaction and for fulfilment. If he is offered a job at less money but with more job satisfaction and fulfilment, his choice will both reveal and confirm what is his primary goal and main motive.

3. It is important to grasp that the goals and motives which are not most important are not thereby “bad”: indeed, in many cases they are necessary. They are only discarded when they conflict with the goals and motives which have priority.

4. On most days of the week, there is no conflict between secondary and primary goals. Indeed, if we think about our lives, it is when secondary and primary goals point in the same direction that we engage on a course of action. A man by being a good father also finds fulfilment: by being a faithful husband he also satisfies his sexual needs: in being a teacher he at one and the same time earns his living, enjoys taking part in the education of young people and feels he is making a useful contribution to his society. In each case, there may arise an occasion when the different goals and motives will be temporarily in conflict with each other: but in a well-integrated personality, this does not happen too frequently.

Let us turn from this rather philosophical discussion to the youth worker. (Indeed it may be that what has been written in II so far does not make sense to you: in which case, you should forget it but consider carefully what follows.) Here is Mrs. Mullvarney who for two nights a week, is a voluntary worker in a club. The main goal of her work is to help young people to live “bigger” lives: to have more fun in more places without spoiling the fun of others, to discover and develop their talents, to be mature and responsible. But she was also motivated “to take up youth [page 4] work” because her life was empty: her grown-up children seemed not to need her. She gains a lot of satisfaction and happiness from feeling that she is needed by the youngsters. Usually these two different aims-the social education of the youngsters and her own emotional needs-can live happily side by side: in fact, they commonly point in the same direction. But sometimes they are in conflict. And then, Mrs. Mullvarney (who is honest enough with herself and others to admit that she does youth work partly because she enjoys it) usually succeeds in putting the growth and development of the youngsters first. She does this when she feels it necessary to tell one of the members a painful truth about herself though she knows the girl will perhaps not be so friendly afterwards. She does it when she directs a girl with a problem to another worker who in the opinion of Mrs. Mullvarney is better able to help: she does it constantly by discouraging any of the members who want to become too emotionally dependent upon her. Mrs. Mullvarney knows there is a part of her which would find this quite exciting: but she realizes it could inhibit the girl from developing her own powers: and she chooses the better part.

But it is time to be more specific about the aims and motives of youth workers. [page 5]

III. The motives

“Selfish” reasons for doing youth work

Perhaps because of our Puritan tradition in this country, one often meets people who think nobody should engage in social or educational work unless their motives are 100% pure unselfishness. It is difficult to understand where they think youth workers can come from in this case since they have to be recruited from the human race. If we apply this standard rigidly to ourselves we are likely to be involved in unconscious hypocrisy: we have to pretend that we are not enjoying it and that we are simply sacrificing ourselves for others. A youth worker refused to go into hospital for a much-needed operation because he said “he did not know what the members would do without him”. The suggestion of a kind but candid friend that he seemed to need the club members more than they needed him, was not welcomed!

Healthy-mindedness demands that we happily acknowledge that our own needs are being met in the youth group as well as the young people’s. Anything else would be intolerable since it would imply that we are superior creatures who have everything to give and nothing to receive: and would result in an attitude of patronage. In the sense that the puritanical purists mean, “absolute unselfishness” does not exist.(2) It is natural and human that leaders and helpers should also gain at least an emotional income from the youth group: workers who enjoy what they are doing are far more likely to be successful in this sphere: and they will certainly endure longer. We are there to “share life” rather than “to do good”. That we sincerely enjoy their company is one of the best messages we can flash to the rising generation.

So we can go through the list of “selfish” reasons which youth workers might give for their endeavours and in each case say, “There’s nothing wrong in that, is there ?”. We may want to go further and declare that the admission of their own gain is a sign of healthy-mindedness, honesty, realism and maturity.

“I am part-time paid and the money is useful.” “Presumably you are giving conscientious service for what you receive.”

“I like being with young people.” “And they probably appreciate your enjoyment of their company.”

“It keeps me young in heart and outlook”. “Your own family have noticed and rejoiced.”

“Helps me to use my skills as football coach/drama instructor/lecturer.” [page 6]

“A pity if those much-needed talents should be buried in the ground.”

To these and other “selfish” reasons for being a youth worker, we could then reply, “Nothing wrong with that is there?”. Equally, however, we should want to go on to ask, “But there is more to it than that, isn’t there? You have other reasons as well”. It is right that some of our emotional needs should be met in the youth group, but clearly if it is only our needs that are being met, then we are using the young people for our own ends. One can still sometimes see youth workers who are self-centred: everything they do aims at their own status, prestige and prominence: actor-producers who are setting a stage on which they can shine: adult table tennis players who merely want to demonstrate their skill: they are a mixture of the comic, the tragic and the ludicrous. In the film of the novel “Kes”, when the P.E. teacher takes the boys for a practice football match, it is clear that he is primarily motivated by a desire to indulge a private phantasy that he is an international soccer star: he cares nothing about what happens to the boys: they know this and laugh behind his back.

Wise youth workers cheerfully admit what ‘they are getting out of it’ but they do not rely upon the youth group for the satisfaction of their major emotional needs.

Serving a “cause” as a reason for youth work

Not unexpectedly, youth workers are often found to be people with a personal interest or hobby for which they display a marked enthusiasm. It can be a physical activity like boxing, camping or mountaineering; or one of the arts-music, painting, drama, design: or a political or religious philosophy: or a particular youth movement like the Scouts or the Guides or one of half-a-dozen others.

Now there is of course nothing unnatural in these commitments: on the contrary we may question the maturity of adults who do not collect some interests and values and loyalties. But they have their dangers as well as their promise for youth workers.

It is not unknown for three creepers to be climbing the building of our commitments.

1. We realize that these interests have had much to do with our own personal development, fulfilment and enjoyment of life. “Boxing made a man of me”, “Drama released me”, “I was a miserable lost sinner until I found faith”. We must of course be true to our own experience. We are right to offer to others what has meant so much to us: but we should stop at “offer” and not go on to interpret everybody else’s experience in the light of our own. Some of us are tempted to see the human race divided neatly into two categories-those who share our enthusiasm-and those who do not. Boxing, for example, will not make a man of every male because it made a man of you. [PAGE 7] Among “instructors” in youth centres-that is specialist teachers of activities-three types may be noticed.

(a) Those who seem concerned only to find the few who are exceptionally talented in their subject. “Train the best and shoot the rest” seems to be their motto.

(b) Those who believe that a wider group of the averagedly-talented can respond to this subject and gain satisfaction from it. They display a more liberal outlook than the first group but their focus is still on the subject, not on the person.

(c) Those who teach the subject enthusiastically but are interested in the youngsters as people whether they themselves are interested in the subject or not. These instructors see the young people primarily as human beings, not merely as possible addicts of their own commitment.

2. The interests that we have usually lead us to join organizations of people of like mind: and organizations which are designed to further the pursuit of that interest. According to our preference we join, say, the Labour Party, the Congregational Church, the Flat-Earth Society, the Youth Hostel Association or the Model Railway Association. Again, this is a human and inevitable process. But again, because we have made a heavy investment of our lives in these movements and associations, we may become over-involved emotionally with them. On the principle of “love me, love my dog” we may find that our relationships with other people are affected. We judge them as human beings by their attitude to the organization to which we belong. We may measure the success of our work among young people by whether we persuade them to take up our enthusiasms and join our organization.

3. This brings us at once to the last danger that besets the path of the youth worker who is partly motivated by the desire to serve a cause. Unconsciously, we may become for the young adult an indoctrinator and a recruiting sergeant. It is not unknown for local church leaders to criticize their youth club on the sole grounds that not many members attend the Sunday evening service. They listen impatiently to answers which justify the work in terms of the social development of the young people in the neighbourhood, whether they join the church or not. An interesting spectacle may sometimes be observed when a policy and programme is put to the members of a local authority’s youth committee. As though they had glass foreheads, one can see the representatives of various youth movements asking, “What does this suggestion do to our organization?”. They should be asking, “What does this suggestion do for the young people of this city?”. Youth work is for young people.

It is not wrong to be partly motivated in youth work by the desire to serve a cause in which we believe. But the issue should not be pushed too far, [PAGE 8] certainly not to the point where we are in danger of trampling on the sacred right of the youngster to self-determination. Anyway, if the cause is worthy, and appropriate for the member, can it not be trusted to a marked extent to speak for itself?

One test is sufficient. Whatever the depth of our commitment can we say “Yes” to the following question? “Do I prefer that he thinks and chooses for himself, even if that means rejecting the causes, values, interests and organizations which are dear to me?”

We have left to the last a “cause” which would be important to some youth workers, perhaps a growing number.(3) They believe that in working in youth organizations they are in some way working for the good of “society” as a whole. Unlike many other countries – U.S.S.R., West Germany, Israel are among the examples – we have very little political education of the young in Britain. These workers want to make up the deficiency, though they would express their aims in a variety of different ways, and indeed could not always be explicit about them. “Training for citizenship”, “Preparation for democracy”, “Learning to be responsible and to take an active part in the life of the community”: these are some of the phrases we might hear in this connection.

In the view of the present writer, “the cause of society” can be one of the admirable aims of youth work. But a change in the climate of social thinking and an associated constellation of ideas, demand that a cautionary note be sounded. Our society is changing rapidly and profoundly. There are a number of assumptions we can no longer make.

1. That it is the duty of the individual to accept and adapt to society: on the contrary education aims to help people to change their society where it needs to be changed.

2. That older people know everything that younger people need to know.

3. That there is a consensus about beliefs and conduct which is transmitted from the past and has to be accepted by the young: theirs not to reason why.

4. That older people know what kind of a society we want to have in Britain and it is the role of the young to learn what this is and work for it.

Positively, if “political education” is to take a worthy place in youth work it must be an invitation to join in a discussion about the kind of country they want to live in: a sharing of agreed moral tasks, a common striving for a vision across the generations: they should be given more freedom [page 9] and more responsibility. They are to be the active, not the sleeping partners, in a social enterprise. Only in this way, can a new patriotism be born.(4)

Helping young people as a motive for youth work

Most youth workers in describing their motivations would give prominence to their aim of benefiting young people: they are partly driven by the desire to make young people happier or better or more mature or more adjusted or more fulfilled. In the present dislike of paternalism, this goal has to be stated carefully. To call a man to-day a “do-gooder” is nearly the equivalent of swearing at him. Yet we should not allow the caricatures of caring to make us forswear caring. The youth worker is simply contributing to a situation in which young people can develop all their powers. Much research evidence proves that most young people value contact with a wise and sympathetic and confident adult and use the relationship in the growing-up process.(5) Because older people no longer feel able to exercise a strong control over the young, it does not mean that they should abdicate from any position of authority: because they can no longer tell them all they need to know does not imply that they have nothing to say to the rising generation. One of the objects of youth work is to encourage the maturing of the young by bringing them into contact with helpful adults.

A useful discussion can take place about the service which can be performed for the youngster by the youth organization. This, of course, will vary from time to time, and from place to place, depending upon general social and cultural factors. In a sense, youth work is always trying to fill in the gaps that are left by the other educational agencies like home, school and church.

For Hannah More at the end of the 18th century, the need was for basic education-the three R’s-and social control. “I have a little plan”, she wrote to her neighbours in a Cheddar parish, “which I hope will secure your orchards from being robbed, your rabbits from being shot, your poultry from being stolen and which may lower the poor-rates”. The Girls Friendly Society sprang up to meet the needs of young girls, away from home in domestic service-often sent out to their first place at the tender age of eleven. The Boys’ Brigade originated mainly because of the desire of William Smith to retain older boys in the Sunday School. During the Second World War, the attendances at mixed youth clubs were very high: it was enough to provide a place for the young people to go: the streets were blacked-out and many places of entertainment were closed. These are only a few examples chosen at random from many more which [page 10] clamour to be mentioned. Clearly, “what youth work can do for young people” differs from one period to another in our British history.

Likewise, a variegated pattern emerges when we look out over the contemporary scene. If you wanted to meet the deepest needs of many thousands of youngsters in Calcutta, you would find them a permanent job and provide them with shelter and a good diet. A major part of official Jamaican youth service is training young men between 14 and 18 in agricultural skills. Indeed, in the modern world, one has to be a wealthy country in order to be able to afford a youth service which is “leisure-orientated”: more frequently in the poorer two-thirds of the world it is concerned with basic education, jobs, food, shelter, health and a clean water supply: in Penang, Malaysia, the youth officers recently propounded a scheme whereby all the traffic meters of the city were uprooted, to provide work as traffic wardens for the many unemployed youths in the city: the job also carries the privilege of attendance in the afternoon at a college of further education. In the same country, land settlement schemes for the young are part of the provision of the agency. There are still many countries where a large part of the efforts of youth workers are directed into the fight for the literacy of a younger generation who have had little schooling.

Let us now-after this swift journey into the past and across the face of the earth-return to our own country at the present. What can youth work hope to give to a significant number of British young people, that they need and that will probably not be provided adequately and at the right time, by all the other agencies of our society? It is not bread or clothes or shelter or basic education. The general answer given at this point is “social education”, but we can spend a little time seeking what this means.

The answer of the “Albemarle” Report (1960) is “association, training and challenge”. Our best efforts can provide opportunities for young people to meet those of their own age in social circumstances: provide “courses” of various kinds: and present the youngster with challenges that will stimulate his growth and development. Good as this was at the time, there are those who wonder whether it still serves as the most useful description of “social education”. For one thing, it was written over a decade ago and much happens in twelve years at a time of rapid social change. Significantly, the Albemarle report, in writing about youth culture, has nothing to say about drug-addiction, a multi-racial society, the students’ protests and demands for participation or the lowering of the age of majority. Yet all those are live issues in a world where young people are growing up to-day. The second objection in my view, is even more serious to-day. The “Albemarle” definition is inadequate because it concentrates on the young person as an individual and does scant justice to the role of personal relationships and community involvement in his well-being. (See 4. below for a more detailed explanation of what is meant here.) [page 11]

So for consideration and discussion, we offer what is at the same time our definition of the term “social education” and our answer to the question “what needed service, not adequately provided elsewhere in their environment, can Youth Service provide for a significant number of adolescents in Britain ?”.

1. FUN Despite much commercial provision of entertainment, and despite also the modern obsession with pleasure, life for many youngsters in our society is boring and predictable: they may earn their living at a routine industrial process: research reveals that at 14 they can forecast with a saddening accuracy just where they will get in life. Moreover, for many of them, it is not just now an exciting experience to be British. “There does not seem to be at the heart of society a courageous and exciting struggle for a particular moral and spiritual life-only a passive neutral commitment to things as they are”. (Albemarle Report). We do not need to apologise for fun as an aim: to help to bring a little colour, wealth and gaiety into the lives of many depressed youngsters is a worthy objective: there are many possible activities for the youth group which need no other justification than that we enjoy them together.

2. INTERESTS Adolescence in our society is a blossoming-time, a new birth, a second chance. It is often a vital formative period-the watershed-of the individual experience. Commonly, at this time the mind is open to ideas, the heart to loyalties and the hands can learn skills in a way that may well not be possible at any later stage of their experience. The doors of opportunity may now be open as well as the windows. A good youth group can tempt-though it should never coerce-them to take up interests from which they will gain immeasurably in satisfaction and development. It is the following kind of incident which keeps the youth worker going through dark disappointing days when he is wondering whether his efforts are worth while.

Bill wandered into the club one night for want of something better to do. He was a lonely frustrated youth who seemed to find it hard to make friends. Truth to tell, he was a bit of a nuisance at first, drawing attention to himself by unhelpful behaviour such as running off with the ball when two members were playing serious table tennis. But one night, unexpected and unplanned, there took place an incident which has changed Bill profoundly. He strayed into a room where the drama group were reading a play which they hoped to produce. He was invited to stay and listen.. To his surprise he found that he was interested and was gradually drawn into the group. Twelve months afterwards he was taking a leading part in a later production. He is undoubtedly one of their best actors. The discovery and expression of this hidden talent has made Bill into a more confident, relaxed and friendly person.

Youth workers should never forget that they are engaged on a high [page 12] adventure of informal education and one that can have significant consequences for individuals.

3. COUNSELLING There are plenty of signs that many young people feel the need at some time or other to share a personal problem with an older person, who may do no more than listen sympathetically. A modern society like ours makes better provision for the physical needs of its citizens: and hence, the present younger generation are, on the whole, taller, healthier and fatter than any that has gone before: but it erects fewer signposts for personality, leaves more to individual choice and provides less of the social significance and identity of the adolescent. Not a few youngsters find ours a confusing community in which to grow up. Counselling can operate at many levels. It may be simply a bit of good advice that is needed though even here we can improve our skills by practice, thought and training. But we should be quick to recognise when the matter is beyond our competence and calls for the professional help, say of the psychiatrist or trained social worker.

4. OPPORTUNITIES to feel a part of and to accept responsibility in and to be involved with the community. Once again we can only touch briefly on what many feel is a controversial subject: and, as throughout this booklet, we are dealing with general principles which have to be worked out in a hundred practical ways. Let us start from the simple proposition that for the vast majority of us happiness is not found in isolation from our fellows: fellowship is life, lack of fellowship is death: one man is no man. There are many conditions of a modern society which have tended to break up the old natural community groups. Men work and live in larger units: they have specialized functions: they are no longer tied by lack of transport and communications to a confined geographical area. Yet, if we are right, the age-long desire to belong to a community and to find one’s useful place in it remains. Too often in the past, Youth Service itself has contributed to the fragmentation and segregation we have deplored, taking an age group and labelling them “Youth” as though they were different from everybody else and somehow did not belong to the community. But to-day a new emphasis can be seen at work. There are many opportunities in our group to help young people to be aware of their world in all its shame and glory and to find their own rightful place in it, of criticism as well as acceptance, being ready to change what is bad as well as reinforce what is good.

Or giving the kaleidoscope another shake, we can see a fresh pattern forming for “social education” being the offer to the young adult in our work of-

A. Personal development or self discovery. The good youth group helps the youngster to learn about himself and to come to terms both with his strength and weakness, his promise and difficulty.

B. Skill in making a variety of personal relationships. Much of our [page 13] happiness depends upon the building of bridges between our own lives and those in our significant circle. Adolescence is a time when we are learning how to be lovers, friends, colleagues, subordinates and leaders.

C. Finding their “rightful” place in the community. The youth group can be the ante-room to the wider world where we have to reject and accept, protest and support, give a lead and follow a lead, accept responsibility and gain our rights. [page 14] 

IV. Summary

1. A youth worker properly has several motives and goals.

2. He should be prepared frankly and openly to admit all of these to himself and to others, including the fact that to a degree he is motivated by his own needs.

3. But a hierarchy or scale of purposes develops. Without being too self-conscious about the matter, he discovers that situations arise and decisions have to be made where he must put one goal before another: he is impelled into priorities where he decides that lesser goals-not wrong in themselves-give way to greater goals. He need not go looking for these moments of decision about priorities: they will arise naturally in the life of the group.

Throughout this booklet, we may appear to be assuming that the motives of the youth worker do not change. That is patently untrue: motives are dynamic not static. A man who begins primarily because he wants to “be with young people” may soon find that he is more concerned to serve young people than to satisfy his own needs. In this matter, as in many others, original motives are not all that important: the decisive issue is whether we will allow those motives to be modified, enlarged and enriched by the experiences we have of being with young people. Years ago, as an adolescent, the present writer founded a youth group in a northern industrial city. From the vantage of the present, he can see that his motive was “I like playing table-tennis. I need others to play with-unless one is extraordinarily acrobatic one cannot play one’s self”. Other youngsters quickly joined the group. Events soon took a turn that challenged his original motive. Would he play table tennis with a youth who had no skill at the game-a novice, who offered no possibility of testing or improving his own skill-if the contest provided the opportunity for a relationship needed by the newcomer?

There was one youth in particular. He had no skill at the game. His face was permanently drained of all colour. His needs could not fit into the framework of my original motive which had to be modified and enlarged.

4. We have suggested that the motive and goal which should be given first priority is the need of the individual member for the raw material of personal development: but that he is not to be understood as an isolated individual but one who will only be fulfilled in social relationships and community involvement.

If this is the right priority, there is no necessity to become over-intense or obsessive about it: that would be to rob the enterprise of its precious spontaneities: there will be plenty of occasions when decisions will be forced upon us that can express our chosen priority.

References and notes

1. I have written about this point at greater length in Youth Work in the 1970s (Routledge & Kegan Paul) pp. 41-49.

2. It is surely significant that, inter alia, the Christian command is “Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.”

3. For the whole of this section cf. Fred Milson Youth in a Changing Society, Routledge & Kegan Paul.

4. Cf. Youth and Community Work in the 70s. H.M.S.O. B. Davies and A. Gibson. The Social Education of the Adolescent. University of London Press. Charles A. Reich. The Greening of America. Penguin.

5. Cf. inter alia, John Bazalgette. Freedom, Authority and the Young Adult. Pitman.

How to cite this piece: Milson, F. (1972) Why am I a Youth Worker? An examination of the goals and motives of youth workers, London: National Association of Youth Clubs. Available in the informal education archives:

This piece has been reproduced here with permission of UK Youth.
First placed in the archives: October 2003.