Youth participation in winter
Winter is drawing in. Nights are getting longer and colder and more rainy it seems (global warming) But what does this mean for youth? One would hope that kids hanging about outside would draw them into the youth clubs and provisions set out for them by a wide variety of orgNsiations. But what I have actually observed is that young people are staying out in groups later, longer and in their school uniforms. So this makes them very identifiable by the general public, but also by the un savouries, as I like to call them.
Definitely the lack of free youth provision has a huge part to play in this. The few youth clubs I know of are few and far between and they open at odd times in term times only. Activities that youth workers think will engage young people are music or sport projects it seems. So Unless you’re a hard core sport fanatic you are unlikely to want to take part in a sporting activity outside, in this weather, so it’s music or go home.
So how do you find out what projects will engage the young people and bring them in? We have been running 02 Think Big projects since our humble beginnings and continue to support youth in their entrepreneurial endeavours. Now our organisation is youth led. Not with a superficial youth advisory board, but with young people as our directors, carrying out community and peer surveys to ensure our projects are relevant. So our provision is in a way targetted. But targeted at all young people within localities. It works! Drama, heritage, cooking and art are trending with our youth.
We would be interested to hear about what’s ‘trending’ in your area. Holla back!