Case Study 2022 – 2023 

  • Client: Engineering UK
  • Author: James Rimmer 
  • Project Lead: Charlotte Patterson

Objective

To recruit, train, and support 50 Young Champions (aged 11-16) from across the UK, enabling them to co-facilitate 12 consultation activities addressing 12 Big Business Challenges. The goal was to inform Engineering UK’s strategy and offer for young people while integrating youth insight into their work as part of their business-as-usual approach.

Challenge

Engineering UK recognised the importance of incorporating the voices and perspectives of young people into their strategic planning and initiatives. To achieve this, they needed a comprehensive approach to engage young people and gather their invaluable insights to shape their offerings effectively.

Solution

Our team at Participation People collaborated closely with Engineering UK to develop the Young Champions initiative. We embarked on a journey to recruit, train, and support 50 passionate and talented young individuals as Young Champions. These Young Champions, aged 11-16, came from diverse backgrounds across the UK, ensuring a diverse, representative, and inclusive cohort.

The Young Champions underwent rigorous training that equipped them with the necessary skills in facilitation, communication, and critical thinking. With a deep understanding of Engineering UK’s objectives, they were prepared to co-facilitate and participate in 12 consultation activities focused on addressing 12 Big Business Challenges that Engineering UK proposed.

Working hand in hand with senior executives from Engineering UK, including their Chief Executive Officer, the Young Champions unleashed their creativity, critical thinking, and problem-solving abilities. They provided invaluable insights, perspectives, and recommendations to tackle and solve Big Business Challenges. Through this collaboration, the Young Champions were able to shape Engineering UK’s strategy and offer for young people, ensuring it resonated with their needs, aspirations, and interests.

Results

The Young Champions’ involvement had a profound impact on Engineering UK’s work and their commitment to youth engagement. By integrating youth insight into their business-as-usual approach, Engineering UK created a more inclusive and relevant environment for young people.

The collaborative approach to youth engagement allowed Engineering UK to gather authentic and diverse youth perspectives, enriching their decision-making process. The champions’ input not only informed Engineering UK’s strategy and offerings for young people but also contributed to shaping the organisation’s broader approach.

The Young Champions actively participated and co-facilitated in 11 consultation workshops alongside Engineering UK’s senior executives, engaging in dynamic discussions, brainstorming sessions, and creative activities to address the Big Business Challenges. Their input and perspectives helped shape innovative solutions and ideas.

As part of the collaboration, the Young Champions assisted in designing and conducting two surveys to gather broader insights from young people across the UK. Their involvement ensured that the surveys were youth-friendly and relevant and generated meaningful data to inform Engineering UK’s decision-making.

The Young Champions worked closely with 10 different teams within Engineering UK, including departments such as marketing, communications, and research. They actively contributed their youth perspectives, offering unique insights and recommendations tailored to each team’s specific focus areas.

The Young Champions’ feedback, ideas, and recommendations were shared with over 60 staff members within Engineering UK. This widespread dissemination ensured that the voices of young people were heard and considered across various levels of the organisation.

The Young Champions had the opportunity to share their experiences, reflections, and insights through two impactful blogs hosted on the Engineering UK website. Their blogs provided a platform for them to amplify their voices and inspire others with their stories of empowerment and contribution.

These outputs exemplify the Young Champions’ significant contributions to Engineering UK’s work. Their active involvement in workshops, surveys, collaboration with different teams, feedback sharing, and blog contributions ensured that young people’s perspectives were at the forefront of decision-making processes, making a lasting impact on Engineering UK’s strategies and initiatives.

The Young Champions initiative demonstrated the transformative power of youth voice and its ability to drive meaningful change. Through their involvement, the Young Champions not only gained valuable skills and experiences but also made a lasting impact on the future of Engineering UK and the opportunities it provides for young people.

Conclusion

The partnership between Participation People and Engineering UK in the Young Champions initiative exemplifies the power of youth voice in shaping strategic decision-making. By recruiting, training, and supporting young individuals as champions, we enabled them to co-facilitate consultations and provide valuable insights for addressing big business challenges.

Together, we ensured that young people had a seat at the table and actively contributed to Engineering UK’s work. The initiative stands as a testament to the value of youth engagement, inspiring organisations to embrace youth voice and integrate it into their business-as-usual practices.

Testimonial

“We have found working with our Young Champions extremely insightful, energising, and thought-provoking. Having the opportunity to regularly consult with a diverse group of Young People has really enabled us to challenge our thinking and ensure that their voices are having a meaningful impact on our work. 

Participation People have a real talent in listening to business questions and challenges and then translating them into fun and engaging sessions which resonate with Young People in order to get their feedback. If I were to describe Participation People in 3 words it would be creative, professional and friendly.”

  • Lucy McLennan – Project Manager, EngineeringUK