The kick-off meeting for the “Our life. Our voice. Young people and poverty” project took place between 26 and 27 of June, in London. Hosted by The Children’s Society, a UK-based charity with a long history of working with disadvantaged young people, the meeting brought together young people and youth work practitioners from five different countries.
YES Forum leads this two-year strategic partnership which explores young people’s attitudes to poverty, and what it means for them to live in families struggling to make ends meet from day to day. Based on a special methodology developed by The Children’s Society, the project sets up 5 groups of young people experiencing poverty in 5 countries: United Kingdom, Romania, Italy, Germany and Finland. The countries have been chosen based on their differences with regard to welfare system, historical development, and economic performance to foster a comparative, investigative approach that bridges the gap between the national and European levels.
The groups of 12-15 young people are accompanied by youth workers and apply interactive and participatory methods to get an insight into the experience of young people in poverty. The groups create discussion at regional and national levels by meeting youth organisations, service providers, local authorities, and policy makers to offer suggestions on effectively improving the lives of young people confronted with poverty.
The project involves YES Forum members The Children’s Society (UK), After Eight (FI), Zefiro (IT), IB Germany (DE) and Ruhama Foundation (RO), as well as the Dynamo International (BE) international network of street youth workers. A final conference in 2017 will present and promote young people’s views and recommendation to policy level in Brussels and the wider public. To receive updates on the project, be sure to follow YES Forum on Facebook.