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Youth Activism in Newham
A representation of an ecology of our findings from observing youth activism in the London borough of Newham.
Ideas / Creativity
Young people worked with adults in these campaign groups to outline and find solutions for some of the issues they were affected by.
We observed engagement to be arranged and organised through a range of digital platforms. One group was hosted using Virtual Reality. We were really struck by the increase in young people's engagement noted by the participation youth workers due to being able to be an avatar.
We noticed that young people were passionate about the issues that mattered to them, and that youth groups were making it possible for young people to be heard.
Campaigns and Themes
We observed a Youth Climate Change Assembly, an Embrace to Celebrate Group about diversity, culture and representation, and a Future YOU Future Me group.
A key finding was that the transition from in-person activism to online activism may be difficult.
While it does become more accessible to some young people, we found that others may be digitally disadvantaged and lack the facilities needed to participate in campaign groups that meet online.
Nonetheless, some groups were able to overcome these limitations by providing young people with the equipment necessary to experience activism online.
We saw really inclusive and creative group facilitation - that supported young people to make their points and to have them recorded and heard.
We learnt that how a group is facilitated is really important to talking 'with' young people.
We learnt young people and older people work best together when the conversation is balanced and the space is a shared one.