Leeds Youth Council Blog
This page contains thoughts, views and experiences of current and past Leeds Youth Councillors.
If you would like further information about the Leeds Youth Council and how you can become a member, please visit the main Leeds Youth Council page.
Disability Awareness Training for Leeds Youth Council (LYC)
Royds Students – School Council Update
What’s it like being a new member of the LYC?
Year 6 Pupils now part of LYC
Leeds Young Carers Card
Leeds Young Carers Card Blog
NEEC Conference – Only young person on question time panel
Working on our CFC pledge to improve Careers Education & work experience
Induction Day / Leeds Youth Council Pledges - Conner, 16
Choose Youth Lobby - Minhaz, 13
Breeze Summer - Dom, 15
Breeze Summer Consultation - Khanyi, 17
Leeds Youth Council and Child Friendly City - Zara, 16
What is a Child Friendly City - Rob, 16 and Katie, 14
What is a Child Friendly City to me - Lib, 16
I have been a full Youth Council member since September 2011. But before that I delivered a workshop with Govind and Lauren about disability awareness for Leeds Youth Council .
In the workshop we each facilitated separate activities. These included a sign language activity, speech impairment activity and an activity that gave LYC the experience of what it is like to be blind.
The best part was running the session on my own with support staff when needed.
Olivia & Danielle
In our school council (Royds School Specialist Language College), we have recently discussed issues such as; Healthy Schools, creation of a school council budget, and the upcoming UKYP elections. We intend to split any given money between the years.
We chaired this meeting with our headteacher and gave a student perspective. We hope to gain improved resources for students and a more prominent student voice post meeting.
Daniel (aged 16)
With an active interest in politics as well as young people’s issues, I was certain I should join the Leeds Youth Council when I found out about it. I joined in early November and have attended three meetings so far, and I have really enjoyed it. Being a member of the LYC has helped me to understand more and more about the issues Leeds as a City faces with regard to young people.
Its given me a chance to talk about what I think, alongside fellow people of the similar ages with similar interests. Its given me a chance to be part of an important group, and influence mainstream decisions on very important matters. Also it has given me a chance to have the occasional political argument as well!
I have really enjoyed my first three months as a member and I’m certain It will stay that way.
Kim (aged 10)
Hi my name is Kim, I’m aged 10. I am one of the first Primary Students to be involved. I have gone to 7 meetings now and they are amazing. I really wish more my age would join though. I go to All Saints School and I am in Year 6. We have recently been talking about making a young carers card, which would help kids that have to look after a family member. By far this is the greatest club I have been to get because you actually help make Leeds a better City.
Jake (aged 15)
I attended a Young Carers Card meeting today and members from Youth Council like myself, and members from Willows Young Carers also attended.
In this meeting we planned out next steps to bring the Young carers Card into existence.
Stay tuned for further updates!
This morning some members from LYC and members from Willow met up. This mornings session was a ‘get to know’ session. The session went well, by the end of it, people felt more comfortable and felt like they knew people more. After the session the LYC people went for lunch and then we had a LYC meeting.
Going to London was an amazing opportunity. It was a great day from start to finish, To meet my local MP was just amazing. I had a fabulous day and I haven’t stopped speaking about this experience. I hope Stuart Andrews (my MP) takes all the comments on board and helps prevent any cuts to young people’s services. I have also received a letter from Stuart, when I saw the envelope that said ‘House of Commons’ I got so happy. He wrote to me telling me that he has talked to the head of Bradford Council about my area which is Tyresal. Because of this experience in London I now develop a true understanding of what it means to have our youth services cut, Young People’s services is about changing lives and raising awareness.
Being part of the Youth Council has certainly changed my life. I am 12 years old but have achieved so much just being part of the Youth Council and I feel so happy and proud that I am part of this service and representing Priesthorpe High School.
I want to thank everyone who has helped me because you deserve the credit. Your motivation and desire to succeed in stopping the cuts for the Youth Council is just amazing and I think your great role models for someone like me to look up to.
Dom – Carr Manor High School
I was asked by Dee Reid, she is the Head of Communications at Leeds City Council, when I shadowed Tom Riordan.
I was asked several questions from members of the audience. Questions about free schools, education and examinations. I was applauded for several of my answers and this is because I was representing the LYC.
After the event I was congratulated on twitter and via emails from the NEEC President, Michael Waters.
At the last Wednesday meeting before the Christmas break we participated in an activity in which we analysed our (the LYC’s) own experiences with careers and education. We also discussed the changes to the law concerning careers education and education in general and how they will effect young people. It seems that we may be able to have a real positive influence on careers education which is definitely a good thing.
By Conner, age 16
16th November 2011
In the Leeds Youth Council (LYC) we had a full presentation on child friendly cities. We decided upon two groups to make our pledges. These groups were 'Rights and Responsibilities' and 'The Urban Environment and Sustainability'. We have decided to make our pledges as 'careers and education', 'access to jobs' and 'safer transport'.
View full information on the Leeds Youth Council Pledges.
By Minhaz, age 13
16th November 2011
8:15am We met at the Leeds train station outside Burger King.
8:45 We boarded the train, I sat with Dimitiry.
We got to London near 11:00am, from here we walked to Westminster Central Methodist Hall. First me and Danny roamed round the workshops which were on the youth service cuts. Me and Danny decided to see how much we could get, free stuff of course.
Then after 20 mins we went to the main hall to see the main speeches.
There was a huge variety of talks from all areas of the UK. They were extremely powerful! Half an hour through it I realised how strong the voices were, and how passionate.
Through the speeches I started making phone calls to my MP, Greg Mullholland. But before I met him in Parliament me and Dimitiry met with this Canadian TV company who wanted to interview us on our views on the youth service cuts.
After the interview we walked to Parliament to meet Greg Mullholland, which was the best experience I ever had. We met so many people, David Blunkett, Hilary Benn, Caroline Lucas etc...
When I was speaking to Greg we had a very opinionated discussion on problems going on in the country which would change the lives of youths. We had very different opinions in some cases. It was an extremely fascinating experience and I am still in contact with my MP.
For more information on 'Choose Youth Lobby' go to chooseyouth.org and check out their guide on 'How to Lobby Your MP'.
By Dom, age 15
16th November 2011
I volunteered at 4 of the 5 summer events of Breeze on Tour, Temple Newsam, Scott Hall, Armley and Kirkstall Abbey. I asked hundreds of children and young people several questions about five topics: Rights and Responsibilities; Play and Culture; Urban Environment; Voice and Influence and Safety.
We issued copies of the UNCRC and asked where they have a right, e.g. school home or local area. Also where they can play: home, street etc. Another question was about the environment: are streets clean?; would you recycle?; do you feel safe?
Read more about The Convention on The Rights of The Child on the UNICEF website and the Children's Rights Alliance For England
By Khanyi, age 17
16th November 2011
Child Friendly City is a project brought forward by Leeds City Council to make Leeds a child friendly city! They believe there are five main points. Examples of these are safety, and play and culture. Basically so there is something for young people to do, but also services that provide details of these places and to make sure more young people know about them.
I think a child friendly city must have all the above but also spaces for children and young people that are clean, free of litter and inviting. Young people are always saying how places like this are hard to find in Leeds as there are so few of them. But for me the most important thing is young people being treated equally, given the same opportunities as in other cities and feel appreciated by society. This is all to do with rights and responsibilities.
By Zara, age 16
16th November 2011
The way to get your voice heard and your influences taken in is by being in the Leeds Youth Council. I've been in the LYC since September. I work alongside a group of young people who strive to get their voices heard by the top people in the city. We try to give ideas to make Leeds a 'Child Friendly City' Everyone is accepted, there are no biases at all. Maybe YOU could get YOUR voices heard at the LYC too!
By Rob age 16 and Katie age 14
16th November 2011
After attending the Leeds Youth Council Induction Day we left feeling informed of a plan for Leeds to become a Child Friendly City. We were informed about five different areas in which progress could be made and were asked which we felt was closest to our hearts. We chose to join the group discussing 'Rights and Responsibilities' of young people to other and of others to young people.
We talked about careers, education and access to jobs which we believe we were entitled to. After discussing it in the group we gave a presentation to everyone else. After we had all given presentations we voted on the topics we thought were most important. Luckily they chose 'Rights and Responsibilities' and 'Urban Environment and Sustainability'. Yay!!
By Lib, age 16
16th November 2011
For me a Child Friendly City is a city where every young person can feel safe and be able to take full advantage of all the opportunities that are on offer.
Every child should feel secure and not feel limited by any kind of financial problems or feel discriminated against.
A child friendly city is for everyone to give parents peace of mind as well as giving young people the best chance they can at enjoying their city.
A child friendly city for me is about equality and being able to live in unity with one another. For young people to be able to feel safe and enjoy their city, and for adults and the elderly comfortable with the way young people are able to construct their time and energy. I feel among many other benefits child friendly city is a good step to reducing ageism and other forms of discrimination in our community.
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