Youth Voice Yorkshire & Humber is unique in the region being a representative regional body led by young people speaking out and working to ensure young people’s views are heard and are taken seriously in matters which affect them. Youth Voice Y&H have met with MPs and MEPs, with police and crime commissioners, LA officers, Councillors, health bodies and others to progress their concerns or in response to invitations and consultations. In 2010 – 12 they campaigned for the region’s schools to adopt a Young Carer’s card scheme and 7 LAs did so to the benefit of young carers in their areas.
Youth Voice Steering Group (YVSG)
Since June 2012 all of the YWU’s Youth Voice work has been led by young people with the setting up of a Youth Voice Steering Group of young people, one from each LA area across the region to plan and drive the work forward. This embodies the YWU’s commitment to promoting young people’s voice and influence which is a key objective for the YWU and is set out in our Youth Voice strategy.
The YVSG meets on a bi-monthly basis and has planned and helped deliver the annual induction residential training event and currently is working on the Curriculum for Life event to be held in Doncaster on 29th June 2013.
Youth Voice Activities
Most Local Authorities buy into the YWU’s broad based regional Youth Voice (YV) offer which complements and extends the range of work they undertake locally, giving young people opportunities to progress and to have a voice at a regional level. Our YV includes the following activities
- Regional campaign meetings e.g. transport campaign event in September 2012 and the planned event in June 2013 on Curriculum for life
- Termly support meetings for YV staff
- Overview of YV activity across the region
- Weekend induction leadership residential training at Hollowford centre in Derbyshire
YWU in partnership with British Youth Council
The YWU is also a partner to the British Youth Council and holds the contract with them for all youth voice work in Y&H. This funding supports a specific calendar and range of youth voice activities:
- 3 regional meetings or conventions
- An induction day for members of UK Youth Parliament and deputies
- Make your Mark vote
- Annual UKYP sitting in July
- House of Commons debate in November
- Support for national campaign
- A Y&H representative on the National Scrutiny panel
- Contributions to Positive Stories – a BYC web based publication
BYC with the Network of regional youth work units have produced some resources to support youth voice work. This includes a self assessment toolkit for the primary YV vehicle in any LA area as well as a handbook for practitioners. The YWU has supported workers with assessments, has held workshops for YV workers and produced an overview of the assessment to help guide development and support work.
Please contact Bill Eve, the Youth Voice Co-ordinator, if you would like any further details and see the Latest News section for updates on YV activities.