A Network of Regional Youth Work Units, in England, collaborating across regions to promote good youth work and young people’s voices.
Every year the SW RYWU sets its annual priorities. We are guided by our Reference Group, which includes people with an interest in our work – young people, voluntary organisations, local authority youth commissioners and national organisations with whom we work. At the January meeting of the Reference Group we had a great discussion about the way things are changing for youth work and young people, and came up with an over-arching priority for 2013:
‘Making a Difference’ – demonstrating the impact of youth work and young people’s voice
In the context of a stated lack of interest from central government and competing demands for scarce resources locally, those who work with young people have to be able to make a clear case for how their work impacts on young people’s lives and development. In the South West the RYWU will be helping the youth sector to demonstrate its impact in different ways. We’ll be taking forward our work to embed use of the Catalyst/Young Foundation Outcomes Framework by enabling youth organisations to select and use appropriate evidence tools to record positive progress for young people.
We’ll also be making sure that young people’s voices are central to local decision making about services that affect them, and celebrating the impact of their involvement through our Sounds Positive project.
We also want to create an annual celebration of the achievements of young people and youth workers, through our new Sounds Positive Youth Work and Young People’s Awards. We are looking for sponsors for each of thirteen awards, and plan a celebration lunch at the fantastic new Weston-super-mare Pier in July. We’ll also produce a booklet celebrating the achievements of nominees and winners as a contribution to providing evidence of how youth work and young people’s voice can make a difference. If anyone would like to sponsor an award, please get in touch with us on 01832 365441 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
List of Sounds Positive Youth Work & Young People’s Award categories
1.Young Media Champion
2. Best Youth Work Apprentice
3. Most Inspirational Youth Worker
4. Making a Difference – Most Influential Young Campaigner
5. Most Youth-Friendly Organisation
6. Young People in the Community Award
7. South West Youth Champion – youth worker, manager, trustee, elected member who has made a difference for young people in their area
8. Most Entrepreneurial Youth Project
9. Best Youth Training Provider
10. Best Volunteer Youth Worker
11. Best Young Volunteer
12. Best Youth Health Project
13. Best Creative Youth Project
• You can sponsor an award for £450 – this includes a free place at the event and the opportunity to present the award to the winner. If you have a preference for the award that best suits your organisation’s profile, do let us know
• We are also seeking sponsorship for other elements of the ceremony – celebration programme, hospitality, flowers and more: contributions to these elements are very welcome!
Throughout 2013 we will also be finding ways to show how the RYWU itself makes a difference to increasing the capacity of youth work and youth voice organisations to make a difference to young people’s lives, and making sure that all our projects have this as a core purpose. It’s always harder for infrastructure organisations to prove their impact – but we’re going to make sure we do!
Regional Youth Work Unit South West