Argyll and Bute Council’s published Children and Young Peoples’ Services Plan 2017-2020 includes a commitment to empower young people’s voices to be heard by ensuring children and young people have a greater understanding of their rights as laid out in the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC). Young people and their families are supported to express their views and are supported to participate in individual and service planning. The views of all young people are listened to and responded to when taking decisions. Young people with additional support needs feel included and are supported in the community.
Consultation work has been carried out with young people and schools to establish existing levels of engagement with young people in schools. In response to findings the following action points have been identified:
Leadership Programme – Review and Update
Capacity building is key to ensuring effective participation of young people in Youth Voice activities. Activities such as the Youth Service’s Young Leader Programme and Involvement Training have had good success but there’s a need to increase delivery and co-ordinate with other provision such as the DofE Leadership Programme.
Participative Democracy Certificate (PDC) – Pilot Rothesay Joint campus
The PDC is co-ordinated by YouthLink Scotland and offers 2 credits at SCQF level 5. The course fits nicely with Pupil Councils and Youth Workers will lead the delivery. It gives participants the opportunity to acknowledge and develop communication, decision-making and participation in the context of democratic engagement. If the pilot is successful, the intention is to roll out to other schools.
Youth Voice Conference
As part of 2018 Year of the Young Person (date to be confirmed,) an authority wide conference aimed at key stakeholders (young people, teachers, youth workers, senior Council officials and Elected Members) will be held to look at good practice, exchange views and agree a strategy to implement in Argyll and Bute.