Democratic Action for Bath and North East Somerset Youth (Spotlight Project)

Miles and Jonny, young trainers from the Democratic Action for Bath and North East Somerset Youth (DAFBY) project for Bath and North East Somerset Council’s Youth Service 

Tell me about yourself
We are both currently studying A Levels at schools in Bath. We both hope to go to University when these are complete. DAFBY is a hobby we share as well as lots of other fun things...

Why did you decide that you wanted to get involved in delivering training for adults?
Because we feel adults can learn something from us, and believe strongly in youth participation. We also felt that it would be a good learning experience and would help us develop many useful skills.

What do you think are the benefits of adults receiving training from young people?
There are lots of benefits; in particular the adults will experience true participation and different style of training than they may be used to. This makes a change from adult led training courses and makes the sessions more memorable with a different perspective.

What do you think are the main issues affecting young people today that adults need training on in order to support young people better?

Issues affecting young people include:

  • Sexual Health - More support/provision is needed for Young People.
  • Participation - Getting young people involved in activities and decisions that affect them.
  • Transport - Free or Subsidised for Young People.
  • Youth Crime - Adversely affects not only Young People involved but also the general public's perception of all young people.

How did you put together the ‘train the trainer’ course?
The course was put together during several sessions where we, and the other young people giving the training (helped by Kate!) decided on what activities would best put our ideas forward and how to make them memorable. We used resources such as Lego to make activities fun! We put together resource packs for each person/group to take away from the session so they could carry out similar activities to those we did with them.

What skills did you need to plan the course?
We needed to be able to look at the planning from both the trainer and trainee's point of view to see what activities would work most effectively. We needed good knowledge of what makes effective youth participation and how that could be incorporated into easy to understand and fun activities.

What have you learnt from your experience of putting together the training course?
Every Young Person felt they had learnt even more about participation in the process, as well as how challenging it can be to produce large amounts of resources and effectively tailor a training course for a specific audience.

What do you think are the key skills that young people attending the course will gain?

Key skills include:

  • Presentations skills - The ability to stand up in front of a crowd of strangers and present something.
  • Group work skills - Each Young Person worked with a group throughout the day and we learnt how to manage and direct our groups.
  • Confidence - Being respected by a group of people, and thanked at the end of the day provides a great confidence boost.
  • Time Management - The day had to run to a deadline, so as the course leaders we had to ensure all items fitted in correctly

What do you think are the barriers to young people getting involved in delivering training?

One of the main barriers to Young People getting involved in this kind of training is simply that they do not know that the opportunities are there for them to do so! Another key issue is the confidence to present to a large group, but once past that barrier, the experience will boost their confidence.

Participation Works is a partnership of…
British Youth CouncilChildren's Rights Alliance for EnglandKIDSNational Council for Voluntary Youth ServicesNational Youth AgencyNCB