I was reading with interest about Sir Vince Cable's views on the impact of Brexit on young people (see: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-40842017).  Sir Vince clearly takes the view that the youth of Britain have had a raw deal following the decision of the majority to leave the European Union and he may have a good point.  This was particularly interesting as I've had an interesting week working with our Youth projects this week.  We have been fortunate enough to be joined by Emily Lanham as our new Project Coordinator (Youth) and together we have been reviewing all of the youth projects.  With new projects starting shortly; one researching ways to support NEETs and another promote social entrepreneurship, our portfolio of projects is continually expanding.

I've also been working with some very impressive members of our youth advisory board and the 99% campaign who are organising a meeting in Parliament to meet with a group of MPs to give the view of young people directly to the decision makers.  I hope I can go along to be a fly on the wall of that meeting to see how MPs cope with such an articulate group of young people expressing their strongly held views about the future of their country.  It is the strength of both the YAB and the 99% campaign that young peoples views can be heard directly, rather than needing an advocate like Sir Vince to speak for them.  Not that I am criticising Vince Cable for speaking out on this issue, the more people that are making the point the more chance there is of the youth of our country having an influence on their future.

Giving young people a voice is the purpose of the 99% campaign, which is a youth-led initiative and participation programme aiming to make society more inclusive, fair and responsive to young people’s views and realities. It achieves its mission by giving direct voice to the most marginalised young people and by dispelling negative stereotypes.

The aims of the campaign are to: 

  1. address "Disadvantage thinking” about young people by promoting positive stories.
  2. tackle discrimination, negative perceptions and stereotypes about young people are tackled within  society, political institutions and service providers.
  3. create new youth opportunities  while current opportunities are highlighted and enhanced.
  4. ensure that the 99% Campaigners receive high quality volunteering and internship opportunities, and that through training, mentoring, accreditation and support they become role models and leaders within their communities.
To find out more please visit the project's  dedicated website http://www.99percentcampaign.org/