I attended a 2-day event held in London by The British Council this week – called Listen Up! Youth in Action, which brought together around fifty delegates from over 30 countries across Europe to discuss youth democracy.
I was there as part of Amplified, an organisation that uses social media to share and discuss events like this online. My job was to photograph, record, interview, live blog and video – alongside my colleagues George, Steve and Laura, while Xander did the high-end tech stuff remotely.
Former Lewisham Deputy Youth Mayor Danny explains his perspective on the involvement of young people in politics.
We captured a lot of really great stuff and it was a fascinating event. For me, a highlight was a visit to Lewisham with about 15 of the delegates, to find out about the Youth Mayor project. It’s an amazing initiative, and the difference it makes really encouraging.
But there were so many great moments, interesting discussions and inspiring young people from a range of different backgrounds, different organisations and with different objectives – but all with a shared goal of increasing participation and representation for young people in the decisions that affect their lives and the future of their communities.
It was hard work: you’re on the go the whole time: recording, typing, interviewing, editing and uploading – but it was a great team to work with and a really great environment to be working in.
The idea is not that we came and did social media ‘for’ the delegates at the event, but that we provided a benchmark, showed them what was possible, gave them raw material to work with, and then they can take this material and share it with their own networks – on Facebook, their websites, and so on – and so they have a more permanent record of what went on that is more revealing and more enlightening than simply a report.
It’s similar in many ways (but also very different) to the work I’ve been doing with music projects such as Aftershock, The Jura Project and so on – and I’ll be taking away some good approaches to this kind of stuff.
I have a few projects coming up soon that this will be really useful for… but man, it’s good to work in a team for this stuff. Doing it solo is a killer…