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Youth Action Teams and Systemic Change

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What impacts young people or communities and their wellbeing most? What systems could we work with to improve positive impact? 

Our Youth Action Teams choose issues that they care about and work in partnership with decision makers relevant to that issue to explore systems within their services and organisations and make recommendations for action and improvements. This includes the development of resources and campaigns, peer research, co-design, co-facilitation and co-production.

Below are some brilliant youth action teams that have taken place in the last year!


Young Guardians with Camden Council and Metropolitan Police 

The Young Guardians are part of Regent’s Park Community Champions – working to improve community safety locally in a youth-led initiative. They have created films and resources and have now trained over 90 professionals in a 1.5 hour workshop they have design in contextual safeguarding locally – professionals have ranged from local teachers, police officers, community safety officers, caretakers, social workers, early help and youth workers. They continue to deliver these sessions and will be delivering to more community members and local businesses in the coming months and are creating a new film! You can see more of their work here www.fya.org.uk/safety/


CAMHS to Community with The Tavistock and Portman NHS Foundation Trust

Young people identified a challenge regarding CAMHS support (CAMHS is Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services) – what is in place while you wait to access CAMHS and what happens when you exit?

In partnership with the Tavistock and Portman NHS Trust, we worked with a group of young people had recently exited CAMHS. The group were trained in peer mentoring and supported to create a short film outlining their recommendations for peer support to be in place for those ending their time with CAMHS (see above). A workshop was later run with senior CAMHS clinicians. The workshop saw staff engage in youth led activities, listen to the young people’s account of their time and their wider recommendations for both CAMHS and peer support. The workshop led to young people’s involvement in further Patient and Public Involvement (PPI) work, where they are paid to continue making recommendations and system changes with staff.

We are currently working closely with the Tavistock and Portman NHS Foundation Trust to recruit a second cohort of CAMHS service users to continue this work and build on the recommendations of the first group.


Feed Your Community with Felix Project 

Young people identified in the FYA Youth Ambassador consultation that anxieties about food access and food poverty were impacting young people. A group came together to organise a project to explore this topic – The group organised a community dinner serving over 200 residents and co-designed a response to try to better use surplus food to benefit the community. The group ended up delivering to a local refugee residence in Soho weekly, collecting surplus food and distributing this to those in need. We hope to work with Felix and Camden Council’s partners related to food inequality and tackling poverty forums in future. You can check out the film Felix project made on their instagram here 


Young Urban Designers with Camden Council and Sustrans

A brilliant group of young people living in and around Regent’s Park Estate came together as Young Urban Designers. We were approached by Camden Planning Department and recruited local young people to form a team. The young volunteers told us they were motivated to join as they wanted to do something positive for their community, were interested in creativity or design or they wanted a safe place to spend time with friends. The project was delivered in partnership with Sustrans between January and April 2024, as part of Camden’s Healthy and Safe Streets initiative.

The young people organised two pop up events engaging 62 other young people in the initiative – a chocolate treasure hunt and a Saturday pop up involving clay, a magician and creative design activities. From their feedback they then designed possible street furniture and ideas for street improvements using Minecraft. They then presented their ideas and recommendations for improving youth engagement in development and planning to local Councillors, planning officers and managers and other relevant decision makers.



If you have an idea for a project that could involve working with decision makers to look at longer term change and impact get in touch! Contact Fathiya.Saleh@fya.org.uk!


We are currently now working with Camden Planning, HS2 and Matt+Fiona to design a new youth led meanwhile outdoor space! Young people will not only design the outdoor space, but build play equipment/equipment young people can use to spend time there. In addition the group will inform and design Regent’s Roots Festival and organise a presentation event to share what they have created! Get in touch if you want to join the team!!

We are particularly looking for summer volunteers interested in the actual build, using tools and getting to work with construction and architecture specialists in build week in August! Get in touch with Ellie.rudd@fya.org.uk


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