9 young people were recruited from Youth Clubs and Youth Groups across the borough of Wandsworth. They became our Young Ambassadors. Their role: To plan, run and evaluate Wandsworth’s first ever Summer wide activity programme called-Summer Pick ‘n’ Mix.
The NUMBERS: Young Ambassadors Project in Numbers
6 Youth Clubs represented
3 Full Day Training Sessions
5 Evening Planning Meetings
25 £25k: Funding they decided how to spend
43 Project Inspections Carried out
205 Hours of Volunteering = 29 Working Days
Design and create the Summer Pick’n Mix programme
Marketing the project and recruiting young people to take part!
Fund projects. Decide which projects to run and support.
Evaluating projects, running inspections and documenting the programme through film.
1. Training Young Ambassadors took part in a series of training workshops to help prepare them for their role. The skills they learnt included:
Youth Work Project
During these sessions, they helped to create: a funding stream, evaluation questions, marketing material, a programme of activity.
2. Marketing Young Ambassadors advised on our marketing strategy. They helped to design all marketing material, create sales pitches, attended school assemblies and recruited young people through outreach events.
3. Funding Young Ambassadors were responsible for deciding how £25,000 was spent! They reviewed applications, considered budgets, looked at value for money and decided who and what they wanted to fund. They also used their expertise as young people to know what activities young people would like to do over the Summer! Projects they decided to fund include:
4. Inspections Young Ambassadors ran 43 inspections! They visited activities to ensure they were being delivered successfully. They evaluated the projects, filmed them and interviewed young people to ask them about their experiences. Watch the outforthe promo video. Their feedback will be used to inform future Summer Pick ‘n’ Mix activities.
So what was the impact of this project for the Young Ambassadors? Here’s a little snippet of what they gained and the difference they helped make.
97 Attendances achieved of Young Ambassadors
33 Accredited Outcomes achieved
100% who increased in one or more skill
The OUTCOMES continued
Young Ambassadors said the following about:
What they have learnt or gained…
- How to be adaptable
- Confidence when meeting new people
- Time management and organisational skills
- Being able to communicate with different people better
- Budgeting and how to write a funding application
- Evaluation skills Knowing what success looks like
- Problem-solving and thinking for themselves more
- Confidence How to plan and design a project
What difference they have made…
- Creating new opportunities for young people
- Young people had a FUN summer
- Helping to improve young people’s wellbeing
- Getting young people off the street
- Deciding who to fund and what money to spend
- Having the power to give young people access to FREE opportunities
- We made the Summer programme happen!
- Evaluated activities to make sure they did things well for young people
- Wrote suggestions on how to make it even better next year
This is the first time we have run a Young Ambassadors programme and the first time we have run the Summer Pick’n Mix. LOTS of things went really well and there was also some BIG learning. This is what the Young Ambassadors had to say at their evaluation meeting.
What were Young Ambassadors favourite bits?
- Learning new skills and meeting new people
- Money! Being responsible for £25k and deciding who to fund
- Taking part in some of the activities!
- Communication and Timetable-Knew where to be and at what times
- Training on the weekends and learning about the role
- Having FUN and seeing other young people enjoy the activities
What were Young Ambassadors least favourite bits?
- Support Staff not turning up to Inspections
- Getting lost trying to find different activity locations
- Resources not available through staff, i.e cameras
- Lots of inspections! Need more Young Ambassadors to share the workload.
- Activities cancelled after we arrived
- Attendance being low at events or young people not arriving
How can we make the project even better? These are some recommendations from the Young Ambassadors and Us for the next Young Ambassadors programme.
Things to continue doing:
1. Run the Young Ambassadors project and the Summer Pick ‘ Mix programme
2. Deliver training on the weekend and cover the same topics
3. Let Young Ambassadors take part in the activities during inspections and give them FREE spaces
4. Timetable of inspections, so Young Ambassadors know where to be and when
5. Support staff to help at inspections and with filming
Things to start doing:
1. Recruit more Young Ambassadors-to even the workload especially for inspections
2. Briefing for staff! Ensure support staff know where to be and when and how to help Young Ambassadors! Ensure staff running projects know that Young Ambassadors are coming too.
3. Pair Young Ambassadors with certain support staff- so they work with the same adult throughout. This will help with communication too!
4. Resources Timetable to ensure Young Ambassadors have the resources they need for inspections
5. school assemblies presented together with the Young Ambassadors
6. Set up a Whatsapp group to keep them in the loop of any changes.
7. These Young Ambassadors can help train up next year’s group!
8. Involve YoungAmbassadors earlier on, and get them involved in planning meetings with the staff! More joint working.
9. Young Ambassadors can help deliver some activities too!
Young Ambassadors had the following things to say about their experience:
“My biggest achievement was being able to help make a difference in young people’s lives, allow a place for some children to keep themselves busy and help make a memorable Summer for them!”
“This project is important because it gave me a chance to feel a sense of independence. I had an amazing experience and I would love to go it again!”
“I have developed my time management better as I needed to get to events on time. I have also really built my self-confidence.”
The Young Ambassadors project was run by the Participation People, on behalf of Wandsworth Youth Service and Wandsworth Council. For more information about the Young Ambassadors project, please contact us.