My name is Chloe. I’m 17 and I’m currently studying Health and Social Care, English Literature and Theatre Studies with the dream of becoming a child psychologist in the future.

I became a Young Consultant with Participation People after being on a formal interview panel with the organisation’s CEO, Antonia Dixey. She was impressed with my interviewing skills and offered me the opportunity to become a Young Consultant and I have now been working with the Participation People team for almost a year. It’s been amazing! I’ve learned various skills and become more confident, just to name a few benefits.

Learning new skills

Throughout my journey as a Young Consultant at Participation People, I’ve learnt how to deliver presentations effectively to people both familiar and new, and how to engage with audiences whilst presenting to them. 

I’ve also strengthened my public speaking skills by delivering sessions to various groups within a number of projects, strengthening my commitment and dedication to the role of Young Consultant by promoting the importance of youth voice.

Overcoming barriers

A barrier for me that I have now overcome was actually showing my face on Zoom. At first, I was too nervous to use video, but soon learnt using video on virtual calls helped to keep people engaged and make the session feel more personal, as though attendees were actually having a face-to-face conversation. I also realised that it can help me professionally to show my face, as it displays a high level of confidence which will contribute towards my employment skills. Plus, I don’t want people to consistently have to talk to a blank black screen!

Supporting young people and influencing decision-makers

My favourite project with Participation People has been working with a small group of Young Consultants to deliver Youth Parliament focus groups for young people, exploring what they know about the opportunity to join Youth Parliament UK and the barriers involved, as well as how to improve the service. It was intriguing to learn lots of new information as I hadn’t heard about Youth Parliament UK prior to the project. It was also interesting to share what I had learned with other young people and to answer their questions as part of a number of informative focus groups.

As a group, we also gave feedback to key decision-makers and organisers at Youth Parliament UK to improve it and make it more accessible for young people. Everyone was incredibly welcoming and pleasant to work with, showing their belief in the importance of youth voice.

 If I were a CEO…

If I was a CEO I would have young people attend interview panels, strategy meetings and other important events allowing them to have an equal say, as young people’s voices are vital for positive change and we should always strive to champion the importance of youth voice.

Sign up and get involved!

If you’re thinking about getting involved in a project with Participation People, I would say do it, and don’t think about it twice! The Young Consultants are like a family. We’re all welcoming and easy to talk to. It’s an amazing opportunity to make positive changes, but to also develop yourself, your skillset for the future, and your confidence. It’s a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, so do it! What have you got to lose?

 

Thinking of getting involved with one of our projects? We’d love to hear from you. 

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