Naomi Thompson – Woman of the Present and the Future

I’ve got many a reservation about the ‘Awards’ culture in today’s society – cue more cries about my continuing slide into miserabilism. However, I did manage a genuine smile at the news that this week Naomi Thompson was the recipient of the Woman of the Future Professions Award. I’m not sure about the notion of the future as in the here and now Naomi has contributed significantly to the world of youth work as a youth worker and lecturer, as a writer, her latest book being ‘Young People and Church since 1900: Engagement and Exclusion’ and, not least from our point of view, as a passionate and committed member of the IDYW steering group.

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The Professions Award recognises women who are making a significant contribution in sectors such as legal, medicine, accounting and education, and who are tipped to reach the top of their field.

The judges described her as ‘an ambitious role model for students, especially with her mixed methods research experience and focus on youth work, religion and crime’.

Naomi Thompson said: “I was humbled and delighted to win the Women of the Future Award after being short-listed alongside some incredible women. The judges commended my research in many areas and my journey from becoming a young parent at aged 20.

“However, the award is a recognition not just of my journey but of the people who have supported me along the way, including the academics and students who supported my nomination – proving no woman is an island.”

 

Two new articles from Y&P – On NEETS and Young Muslims

Continuing the promise of Y&P’s revised format, two new, stimulating articles are awaiting your perusal.

From ‘NEET’ to ‘Unknown’: Who is responsible for young people not in education, employment or training?

NEETS

Situating his discussion in its recent historical context, Liam Wrigley examines how young people labelled as ‘NEET’ have now become ‘unknown’ or ‘lost’, arguing that this is due to a lack of clear strategy concerning actors that have been responsibilised in responding to the employment, training and welfare needs of young people.

The number of young people (between 16-24 years of age) who experience being Not in Education, Employment or Training (NEET) has been of grave concern, with the rates of young people labelled as not in education, employment or training remaining high (Simmons et al, 2014). In the UK alone, the number of young people who are NEET has fluctuated between 15% in 2002 to 11.5% in 2016 (DfE, 2017). The label NEET has been successively adopted throughout Europe and internationally (Simmons et al, 2014), although there has been great variation in how this policy label has been defined globally (i.e. some countries count unemployed young people who are graduates or in precarious work situations or ‘zero hour’ contracts). The label reflects a growing trend in recognizing young people that have fallen outside the labour market or education. Throughout Europe, the rate of NEET young people remains high, with countries such as Spain, Ireland and Italy recording more than 17% of young people as out of education, employment or training (Eurofund, 2016).

Young Muslims and exclusion – experiences of ‘othering’

 

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Ta to voa.news

 

On the 16th anniversary of 9/11, Stephen Pihlaja and Naomi Thompson explore experiences of exclusion faced by young Muslims in England.

Since 9/11 and the ‘war on terror’ we have seen an increase in terror attacks receiving high-profile media attention in the UK and Europe. In 2017 these have included attacks taking place in London on Westminster Bridge and London Bridge, and at Ariana Grande’s concert in Manchester. At the time of writing, the recent Barcelona attack is the most current example with media coverage ongoing. There is a strong sense of solidarity after such events that has seen people come together in often positive ways to respond, grieve and build community with each other. However, such events are also followed by increased levels of hate crime towards Muslim individuals and communities, and the aftermath of these events impacts on the everyday lives of young Muslims. In addition, both the fact that most ‘Islamist’ terror attacks take place in Muslim countries against Muslims and the hate crime that is levelled against Muslim communities in the UK and elsewhere following terrorist events, go under-reported.