The team of young researchers has claimed the British Youth Council’s (BYC) Youth Voice Star Award for Young Campaigner of the Year and Dorset Youth Council has claimed best Youth-led Organisation or Project for its ‘Dorset Youth Voice Summit’ project.
Both awards mean that young people from Dorset will be invited to London to take part in a national awards ceremony, for which both projects have now been shortlisted as a result of being a regional winner.
Last year 24 of Dorset’s Young Researchers surveyed nearly 3,000 young people for their views on social isolation, their own aspirations and volunteering, before presenting their research to 87 decision-makers including local and national politicians, directors of services, budget holders, headteachers and businesses.
As a result, and based on what young people wanted:
- a new staff member was hired to look at social isolation in young people with learning difficulties and disabilities
- family information services have made their websites more youth-friendly
- there has been a successful bid for funding to support building academic resilience in secondary schools, offer employability skill sessions, and create additional information and resources for parents, young people and schools to support their careers decision making
The researchers are continuing their good work this year by asking nearly 5,500 young people what matters to them in 2019 when it comes to mental health, emotional wellness and healthy relationships.