“Young people have been empowered to lead change thanks to our schools and partnership, thank you,” by Alex Reid, National Coordinator
In another year of flux due to Covid-19, the strong partnerships which drive YPI have ensured thousands of young people have been empowered to lead positive change in their communities in 2021. The programme’s National Coordinator Alex Reid shares her highlights and thanks as we reflect on 2021 and look forward to 2022.
“We knew the second part of the 2020/21 was going to be busy, but we never anticipated 140 finals to take place in the final month of the academic year. It was a gargantuan effort by our schools, national and regional team, and funding partners, but we closed out YPI in an incredibly strong position. Young people had this vital opportunity to have a voice at a time when they felt voiceless. Charities received much-needed funds and increased awareness. And school communities banded together on something wholly positive.
“The rush of June isn’t something any of us would want to repeat, but it was something we all had to do in extraordinary circumstances, and I am incredibly proud reflecting on what we managed to achieve together in an extenuating, challenging situation.
“We have collectively ensured that YPI remains accessible and inclusive, focussed wholly on the young people’s experience and empowerment through a series of adaptations.
“A survey of more than 700 young people is proving that the programme continues to make a huge difference with 78% saying YPI has improved their teamworking skills, that is an increase of 15% compared to last year. More than three-quarters believe that charities make a difference in their communities and 73% have a better understanding of social issues.
“This academic year, we have more than 250 schools committed to delivering the programme, with the majority of activity underway. We have been delighted to return to a number of in-person YPI Final Showcases. We’ve also continued to learn from the digital approach, with some events continuing online. We have grown our funding partner mentoring thanks to Teams, Zoom, Google Meets (and the myriad of other platforms we had barely considered two years ago).
“This year, we also launched our Maximising Impact Sessions which are supporting our schools to consider the potential of YPI to address a range of community and curricular drivers.
“We have learned a lot together and have always remained ambitious. This is only thanks to our partners and, as we reflect on the year that has been and the year that is to come, it feels an opportune time to share our gratitude. Our gratitude for our teachers, SLT, for our likeminded, supportive funding partners, for the charities and third sector agencies, and of course our dedicated regional and national team. We thank them for their continued commitment to innovate, often in extremely challenging circumstances, so that #generationchange can be empowered during this generation-defining time.”