Participation Toolkit

Many of the decisions made locally and regionally, are made by adults and the thoughts and feelings of children and young people are often not considered, although the choices made will have an impact on their lives now and their future. Participation provides young people with the opportunity to make a real change within an organisation and community.

Evidence has shown that when young people are part of decision-making processes, the services provided are more effective and valued by all. It offers opportunities for the voices of young people to be heard within local services and communities and to wider key decision makers.

This toolkit has been created to support youth workers to engage the voice of children and young people in decision-making processes and facilitate them to express their views on projects, activities, services, and issues that are important to them. The activities included are adaptable for any age group and context, and many alternatives and expansion options are detailed.

Most activities can also be run as stand-alone activities in drop-in or youth club contexts to give young people a ‘taster’ and start building their capacity to participate fully.

We would like to express our thanks to the staff in the EA Regional Participation team and the My Voice team, the Horizons team, stakeholder engagement and social impact, and the local youth workers and young people who contributed to the co-design of this resource.

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