Sarah Ferguson, the Duchess of York, visited Huddersfield-based community organisation Conscious Youth CIC, to attend a ‘Conscious Girls’ session on Wednesday 21st July held at The Chestnut Centre in Deighton.

Serena Johnson and Sophie Simpson, Co-Founders of Conscious Youth CIC, have been working in the Huddersfield area since 2016 to reach young people in their community and founded the organisation in light of youth services cut back in the local area.

The organisation aims to enhance the emotional and mental resilience of young people, through innovative projects which are co-designed and led by young people. The key priorities for Conscious Youth are to address active citizenship and community cohesion.

Activities and initiatives created by the organisation include; Youth Central, Conscious Kidz, Conscious Girls, Unified Youth Festival, healthy holidays summer scheme, delivering an early intervention programme, ‘Stepping up and Stepping out’ in schools and colleges and Voices2action.

The Duchess of York visited the weekly ‘Conscious Girls’ session, a grassroots youth-led initiative focused on improving the resilience of young women aged 12-16 years old. Conscious Girls provides a safe and non-judgemental environment for young women to discover who they are, improve their social awareness and build a network of support.

The sessions cover a wide range of topics to inspire and empower young women from the least advantaged communities by meaningful engagement in positive activities.

During her visit, the Duchess spoke to the group about important issues, including mental health, self-confidence, female empowerment and her own self-esteem issues.

Commenting on the visit, Conscious Youth Co-Founder and Director of Operations, Sophie Simpson said: “We are so grateful that the Duchess took the time to come and visit our Conscious Girls yesterday. She really made an impact on the group by sharing her personal experiences with issues young people are facing on a daily basis.

“This is definitely an experience the young women and all at Conscious Youth will never forget. What a character she is, truly a remarkable woman with a lot of wisdom to share.”

Find out more about Conscious Youth CIC and their work in the community here: