Young people have their say

2 April 2009

Newham youth forum

Children and young people from Shelter’s educational support project in Newham have come together to create their own youth forum.

Keys to the Future: Newham supports homeless children and young people in the borough. There are thousands of homeless children in Newham, a London borough with one of the highest numbers of families in temporary accommodation in the country.

Homeless children can miss out on up to 25% of their education, which has a severe impact on their future prospects. The project helps children who have been moved around a lot get back into school with minimum disruption, offering tailored one-to-one support and providing extra help with schooling and homework clubs.

Read more about the project on the Keys to the Future website 

Newham youth forum

The youth forum (pictured here with Newham Young Mayor Joshua Adejokun - second from left) aims to give children and young people from the project a voice. They'll have the chance to discuss the issues they and other young people face, what would make their life better, and the opportunity to organise fun and educational activities for themselves and other children in similar situations.

The youth forum will also be involved in making decisions about the work of the project in future.

Newham’s Young Mayor Joshua Adejokun attended the youth forum's first meeting to talk about the work he and the Newham Youth Council does. He said; 'I welcome the opportunity to talk to young people today, it's really important that all young people get to have their say.

'It is great to see charities like Shelter listening to young people's views'

The youth forum plan to take their messages to senior council officials across Newham and beyond, and are already organising a drama-based presentation for some organisations.

They also voted on their name at the first meeting - the Newham Youth Defenders!