A message to the young people we work with…

Today is International Youth Day 2020! The theme of International Youth Day 2020 is “Youth Engagement for Global Action”. This theme is all about celebrating the ways in which the engagement of young people at local and global levels is making a positive difference to the world we live in.

This day is an incredibly special one for us, as if it were not for you, we would not be doing the work we love so much.

We may be youth engagement specialists, but you are the experts. You’ve helped guide us, challenge us and re-energise our thinking. We are at our best when we are listening and learning from you. Your stories, experiences, and feedback continue to frame, and influence our thinking in relation to the consultancy and training services we offer.

To commemorate this day, we want to put the spotlight on to you. We have not one, but two Young Commissioner programmes, which we run on behalf of the NHS Wandsworth Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) and the North East London Commissioning Partnership (NEL).

Our Wandsworth Young Commissioners are currently conducting monitoring visits with different mental health service providers and service users in Wandsworth. Despite the pandemic putting a halt to our face to face engagement, this has not stopped you from facilitating some fantastic interviews. You have used your research and reporting skills to pinpoint key recommendations which could help improve the lives of service users going forward. Hats of to you!

Meanwhile, our NEL Young Commissioners have created a truly inspiring training programme, to support professionals working with or on behalf of children in care. With direct experience of growing up in care, you have developed three inspiring trainings which will help professionals explore the importance of relationships, mental health and leaving care. You left attendees speechless with your face to face training, and we think it is fair to say, that your online training will be just as impactful!

So, to all the young people (both past, present, and future) who take part in our programmes, we can’t thank you enough. Your voices are powerful and should not be silenced.  We will continue to stand with you, help you rise and improve the world we live in.

You’re the best!