Youth Forum

Burley Parish Council are looking to encourage active citizenship amongst the under 18’s in the village and are eager to work with young people who care about their community enough to want to improve it. We want to give the under 18’s the opportunity to engage in decision making, and a chance to volunteer within the local community and contribute to working groups to deliver the change they want to see.

What is the Youth Forum?

The forum is a formal, structured organisation who come together to consult, deliberate, make decisions, and then implement agreed ideas or initiatives. The Forum works through meetings in which young people can discuss subjects that are important to them with other like-minded individuals. This is not a youth council as such, it’s more of an opportunity provide young people with opportunities to come together in working groups to lead on thinking and implementation of ideas and changes that they want to see. It’s about working with other groups in the village to provide insight and views from a young person’s perspective.

This is the first time that the Parish Council have tried something like this, but we believe that we will see benefit from more creative and innovative ideas coming forward.

What’s in it for me?

With so much competition for university places and jobs, it pays to make the most of your free time by using it productively and developing additional skills that will help your university application and CV stand out from the crowd. Extra-curricular activities enhance your CV for university and job applications. Both universities and employers appreciate applicants with meaningful extra-curricular achievements, not just club memberships – it’s the quality of the applicants’ extra-curricular activities matters more than the number of activities you participate in. Universities and employers want driven and motivated individuals who would be a great asset to them, and so your extra-curricular activities help them to see what kind of a student you are and why you would be a great prospect for them. Youth forum activities tells university admissions tutors that you’re someone who contributes to society and who is therefore likely to get involved in the university community. For employers, it demonstrates valuable business skills, such as communication and ‘people skills’, teamwork and so on. Universities and employers want to see you as an individual and what makes you unique. They don’t want to take on people who all do the same extracurricular activities as diversity is what makes life more enriching.

For those that are interested we hope that this forum will help build their confidence and conviction that they can act with others, have influence, and make a positive difference in society

The Forum provides an opportunity outside of parental control to develop your self-awareness by demonstrating you value different perspectives and learning about the impact you can have on others. It’s about learning to build relationships with others and learning how to use dialogue as a tool to build trust and understanding

What do you do exactly?

The group meets to discuss ideas that have been put forward to improve facilities and services for young people in the village. The pros and cons of different ideas are discussed, as are the ease with which they can be delivered, and an understanding of who would wish to help move these ideas forward

The outcome is a series of working groups comprised of young people who devote time and effort to deliver specific projects. All of this is done under supervision from representatives of the Parish Council to ensure the young people are supported appropriately and act within the limitations

Where appropriate, if changes are being proposed made to existing facilities or services, Parish Council representatives will make the necessary inductions and help members of the Youth Forum pitch their ideas. However, we cannot insist that other organisations act on the ideas being put forward. Equally where funding may be required to purchase equipment, the Parish Council can advise on grants and can assist in the transfer or holding of money, but if appropriate, it would be expected that members of the Youth Forum would make the application

The Youth Forum provides opportunities for the engagement and involvement of young people in the village and its activities. For example:

  • How might the village library be better used to support the needs of young people
  • How can social media be used to promote the many things going on that are of interest to the young people in the village
  • Jubilee year 2022 will provide an opportunity for community wide village activities. It would be good to have young people involved in working groups, or generate some activities.
  • A chance to input into the design and thinking behind some of the village recreational facilities

What activities does the Forum NOT get involved in?

  • The forum is not just an ‘suggestions box’ where ideas are put forward in the expectation that someone else would be charged with making it happen
  • Nor is it any sort of approvals board for vetoing Parish Council or Bradford Council proposals
  • The forum is not a Youth Club where young people can meet and engage in leisure activities
  • References to Parish Council should not be confused with any form of church administration. Neither the Parish Council nor the Youth Forum are aligned with a specific religion and there are no religious activities.

 Who are you looking to join?

We are looking for young people to come forward who

a) have ideas on improving the facilities and services young people in the village, and

b) are willing to make a time commitment to realise realistic improvements under supervision.

This is an ideal opportunity for any young person in the village that might want more a voice, and who wants to learn about how to influence decisions, debate problems, evaluate different solutions to improve their community and solve problems together

Suggested age range 10-18

There are no limitations on, race, religion or sex

We are looking for people who feel motivated to make a difference here in Burley. People who have the drive to make sure ideas don't just remain ideas, using the Parish Council know how and network to help influence change.

To help bring ideas into life we are looking for people who are resourceful and imaginative

Where can I find out more?

If any parent or young person wants to learn more please email: burleyyouthforum@burleyparishcouncil.co.uk.