As part of the development of this new centre, we have an amazing group of young people steering the direction of the centre – The Warren Centre Youth Management Team.
They are steering the activities that will take place at the centre, addressing issues raised by young people and the community. The aim of the centre is to be a specialist in youth action, providing a space for young leaders, activists and volunteers to develop skills, support each other regarding their well-being and community belonging and a place to plan and lead their own projects, campaigns and events. It will also enable them to share best practice with each other and other organisations
The group formed in December 2018 and started working together in January 2019 initially meeting weekly and were trained in youth social action. FYA successfully applied to be part of the first ten young people’s cohorts of the national Community Organisers programme funded by the Department for Culture, Media and Sport. As part of this the young people received training (including at a residential) around community organising, community listening, action planning with the community and consultation methods.
Between February and April, the team then conducted peer research and community listening, culminating in in an event called VISION.
We have employed two former FYA Young Ambassadors as part time paid Youth Facilitators, to help make the Youth Management Team as youth led as possible. Since Summer 2019 the group;
The group has also produced an initial template for youth social action ‘Inspiration’ activities and small events based on the research conducted such as themed debates, themed open mic, masterclasses or speaker panels and more. These inspiration activities will act as an opportunity for volunteers to come together in a more social context, celebrating the work being undertaken across Camden by young people, whilst also inspiring existing and potential new members to take part in social action.
They have also been co-producing the model for the ‘Youth Action Team’ model, where cohorts of young people will be able to approach them with ideas for new projects and activities that address a social need for them, their peers or the community, or where they can be trained in youth social action to identify a project they want to work on. Each team will be able to use the venue, staff support and facilities at the hub as a resource for planning and/or delivery of their project. The management team have co-designed training that each youth action team will undertake before they pitch their idea to a panel consisting of members of the management team and a staff member. Each team will be awarded up to £1000 if they have a successful pitch, and then be supported to make their project happen! If the project is successful and well received, the team would then have an option to work with the fundraising team to apply for other funding and allow the project to become longer term and established. We are very excited for the pilot projects to start and for the work this team have started to continue to develop.
The potential difference the Warren Centre will make to our community is enormous. It will become a hub for the community to come together, for young people to have the opportunity to have a real impact on its development and for everyone involved to learn and appreciate each other’s needs, wants and aspirations.
The FYA 2019-21 Strategic Plan includes key priorities of increasing the number of young people participating in youth-led social action and creating more opportunities for them to set the agenda for community action; this project goes a long way to making that possible.
Young people will be empowered through having access to a dedicated space they can take ownership of and developing youth-led solutions to improve cohesion, safety, health and well-being. The change created will have a lasting impact and improve connections between individuals and groups. In doing this they will gain transferrable skills and confidence, which help them access future employment opportunities.
If you know any young people who might be interested in also joining the group, or who might want to run their own activity or campaign get in touch with Ellie.Rudd@fya.org.uk