Many schools host charity fairs in the early stages of the YPI experience to introduce young people to a selection of charities addressing different social issues in their area.
In order to ensure charities and pupils get the most from the experience, a number of schools are preparing booklets in advance of the event which include details about the charities in attendance, contact details, and QR codes to scan to access more information.
Elgin Academy was one of the schools which took this approach, supported by its DYW Coordinator Carinne Taylor. She said:
“YPI is a great initiative to be involved in and it has such a positive impact on the charities and young people involved.
“The idea of the booklet has been used with the DYW Moray team at various other events in local secondary schools, and I felt it was a great resource to utilise for the charity fair. The QR codes remove the pressure to find the charities’ websites and allows young people to discover charities they may never have heard of or had a personal connection to.
“The booklet also offered some support to the young people when asking questions and finding the information they needed from the charity. It also helped the charities to know the kind of information they might be asked ahead of the event. The success of this was evident from the feedback I received from the charities, and all involved in the programme.”
Amanda MacKenzie, YPI Co-lead Teacher at Elgin Academy, added:
“We are very fortunate at Elgin Academy to be supported by Carinne Taylor, our excellent DYW School Coordinator. Carinne has worked hard to establish positive relationships with local charities and has made a huge difference to our YPI programme.
“Soon after the YPI launch, we had the charities fair to give our S5 pupils the opportunity to talk to different charities and find out what they do and which social issue their charity addresses. Most groups were able to talk to four different charities.
“As time was quite limited the QR codes in the booklet were helpful for those pupils who wanted to discover more. All the pupils made notes in their booklets as they had these conversations which really helped them focus on the task at hand.”
The Elgin Academy booklet can be viewed here.