We at Young Advisors always try to encourage our YAs to take ownership of their schemes, and no finer example of this can be found than in Sandwell!
Following the closure of its host organisation, Sandwell Young Advisors (referred to as SYA) found itself in real danger of closing down for good. Not content to see his scheme fold, Rohim, one of the scheme’s original cohort of YAs, voluntarily took over the leadership of the SYA scheme in September, and has worked instrumentally with existing Young Advisors to get things up and running again as an independent body. Following months of planning, including time spent devising and writing up child protection and health and safety policies, as well as building up some strong local partnerships, the SYA are finally back in business!
Rohim and his fellow YAs have all taken training in how to work effectively as self-employed consultants, whilst taking advice and guidance from the charity’s head office. They have worked particularly closely in terms of building relationships with Richard, our Midlands and Eastern Regions Development Officer.
“Under the new leadership we have secured work contracts from September to December 2010 within only a few weeks of trading. These include working with the PCT to develop and research for Sandwell’s new Children and Young People’s Plan. This is the highlight of our work to date because this plan will not only determine future spending plans, but it will also help to shape youth activities and plans for the next few years under the coalition government.
As we all know, within local areas it is a crucial time for all young people as the new government puts its plans in place. Our contract with the PCT will help to ensure that all young people’s voices are heard in Sandwell.
We have secured another contract to do further research on adolescent health in Sandwell with Looked after Young People and the Youth Offending Team. Another recent success was when we hosted the ‘Sandwell without Borders Event’ at The Public, West Bromwich. Following that, in December we will be researching young people’s views about activities being run at George Salter Collegiate Academy.
Sandwell Young Advisors is a unique scheme and is an exceptional one too. We are a real life example of young people working for young people. We have developed a lot of business in a short space of time and are proud of where we have got to. Above all, we are proud to call ourselves a ‘team’.” Rohim Mohammed, Oct 2010.