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'Youth Work and Youth Services: Our Shared Future' A Choose Youth Open Forum

ChooseYouth have convened a special open forum event on April 13th, 2016 in a central London venue targeted at ‘all youth sector organisations who wish to participate in a shared future for youth work and youth services’. Bookings can be made through the Eventbrite page.


The event is designed ‘to be conducted in the best traditions of youth work itself and input is welcomed from all interested parties to help shape up the agenda.’


The welcome to the day states: ‘Collective discussion will take us forward. There is no pre-ordained outcome, or programme. We hope to lift our spirits and aspirations. The agenda is established by those who attend on the day. The subjects for conversation in the attached papers are suggested not imposed. The general direction of the ChooseYouth campaign is expressed in our manifesto and draft Youth Work Bill.(follow link to read this)


Our campaigning so far assumes political will and public structures exist to again sustain a Youth Service. Our difficulty is that this might not be the case. As practitioners we may be in a position like those who built the Youth Service in the first place. Patchwork, largely charitable provision with minimal state support was built up from the late 1930s and was then almost destroyed twenty years later by a Tory Government. The voluntary sector, practitioners and unions got together and campaigned and a government committee was set up which introduced, from 1961, collective bargaining, state funding, a youth centre building programme and professional qualifications.


Will history repeat itself in a new way now?’


The open forum on April 13th will take the form of a brief opening together, then four workshops and a final session seeking to bring the best of our ideas together.

Doug Nicholls, Chair of the Campaign, has written a discussion paper to stimulate discussion on the day and this can be downloaded by following the link provided.


The Association will be represented on the day, contributing to the discussion and sharing the headlines from our own consultation on ‘Shaping the Future: Where now for youth and community work’ that took place in March 2016 with full outcomes to be published in July 2016.


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