The state, the market and the voluntary youth sector, September 18 – Manchester




The state, the market and the voluntary youth sector

18 September 2014, 11.00 for 11.30 – 4.00

Brunswick Parish Church Centre, Brunswick St, Manchester, M13 9TQ

The In Defence of Youth Work campaign is committed to encouraging an open and pluralist debate on the state of youth work at a time of limited opportunities for collective discussion on this and the radical shifts in the landscape in which it is operating. This seminar is IDYW’s latest attempt to help fill that gap.

Why a seminar on the voluntary youth sector?

Two of the least debated, even acknowledged, of the ‘radical shifts’ of the last decade have been the voluntary youth sector’s changing relationship with the state and the increasing intrusion of private businesses into its field of activity. The seminar is offered an opportunity to look critically at the impact of these developments and the voluntary youth sector responses.

The seminar is therefore aimed particularly at youth work practitioners (paid and voluntary), managers and policy-makers in voluntary youth organisations as well as youth work students and tutors and those with perspectives to offer from the statutory and private sectors.

Outline programme

The morning will focus on locating the sector in its current political and ideological contexts and within the wider voluntary sector.

Ian McGimpsey (University of Birmingham) will draw on his research into the effects of neo-liberal policies on youth provision.

Bernard Davies (IDYW and National Coalition for Independent Action will consider the responses of some national organisations

Small group discussions will give participants a chance to respond to these contributions and offer their own analysis and experience of national policies and developments.

The afternoon session will be introduced by two approximately 15 minute contributions:

Helen Gatenby (M13 Youth Project) will reflect on her experience and whether ‘the piper ever gets to call the tune‘.

Tess Gregson (42nd Street) will consider ‘Survival of the fittest: ethics, conviviality and the economic imperative.’

Participants will then have an opportunity in small groups to share and compare experiences and strategies for action.

A final plenary will focus on clarifying key messages from the seminar, including for IDYW.

Refreshments: Teas and coffees will be provided. However, as local options are limited, please bring your own lunch.

Cost: As for all IDYW events this will be kept low –Students/volunteers/unwaged £2; Waged £7.

Venue: for a map and directions, go to

To register, email


The state, the market and the voluntary youth sector [flyer to circulate]

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