Across recent months we have tried to encourage the organisation of an open and pluralist conference on ‘The Future of Youth Work’ – thanks to Sue Atkins and Malcolm Ball for making most of the running. The hope was that such an event, bringing together differing and conflicting perspectives, might happen under the broad banner of Choose Youth. In the end our initiative has come to nought. Leading organisations such as NYA and NCVYS, together with the unions, displayed interest, but have been themselves under great pressure and unable to free up the necessary time and energy to move the idea forward. For the moment the proposal is on hold.
However an event focusing on the future of youth work in the UK is to take place at the De Montfort University, Leicester in mid-November. The seminar will be spread over two days, November 15/16. It is being organised on a delegate basis. We are pleased to be sending two people and will be making a formal contribution on our analysis of the contemporary situation. If you want to find out more, contact Momodou at MSallah@dmu.ac.uk.
Aims and Objectives of the Seminar
- To critically explore the current state of youth work in the UK.
- To explore how youth work/work with young people can continue to effectively engage young people at the margins to access their social rights.
- Generate a greater understanding of the issues that affect young people’s access to social rights (race, class, gender, disadvantaged neighbourhoods etc.).
- Sharing of good practice and development of curriculum currency nationally and internationally.
- Proposals/partnerships (networks) to further work on young people’s access to social rights to be developed.
- Introduction to youth policy on the European level and support mechanisms for the national level, one of which is the Council of Europe’s recommendations for young people’s access to social rights.
As far as our Campaign is concerned we are embarking on a process of reflection and self-criticism as the basis for answering the question, ‘where do we go next?’ By the end of this month we will post and circulate a discussion paper, ‘Where Next for the Campaign?’ This will form the basis of debate on our site and at two IDYW meetings to be held on Thursday, November 29 in London and provisionally Friday, November 30 in Sheffield. We hope very much you will join this critical dialogue. Looking further ahead we are intending to hold a national IDYW event on Friday, March 8 in Leeds immediately before the Youth&Policy History of Youth and Community conference. More details to follow.