In November 2020, Volunteer Midlothian signed up to Scotland’s new Power of Youth Charter. The Charter is based on feedback gathered from #iwill campaign partners and ambassadors. It provides a framework for organisations to empower more young people and help them shape decisions, take social action and make a positive difference. One of the most important ways that this can be done is through volunteering.
We at Volunteer Midlothian are excited to promote the Charter and to share our commitment to involving more young people in what we do as an organisation. In 2021 we plan to develop our activities in partnership with more young people, particularly around how we can make our digital output (including this website and our social media pages) more interesting, relevant and user-friendly for younger audiences. You can read through the full list of our commitments below. If you or a young person you know would be interested in helping us with our digital developments in 2021, we would really love you to get in touch!
Volunteer Midlothian’s Power of Youth #iwill Commitments
How will you prioritise empowering young people to volunteer and take social action?
- We will work with our partners, including young people, to increase the number of volunteering and other opportunities for young people in Midlothian.
- We will involve young people in the development of new and better digital resources to keep them connected and more involved in conversations about volunteering as a form of social action.
- We will promote the Saltire Awards scheme more comprehensively across Midlothian.
- We will try to increase the number of young people who are involved in making decisions about how our organisation is run.
- We will share stories about young people who have made an impact through volunteering.
How will you open up your decision-making structures?
We will firstly involve young volunteers in the development of our new digital strategy and website. After that we will use these mechanisms to engage more young people in conversations about volunteering, social action, poverty and inequality, and how to make positive change in society. We will actively look to recruit young people to our volunteer forum and to our Board of Directors.
How will you work in partnership with young people?
Partnership working is at the heart of what we do in Midlothian. We are already working with local organisations to try and address the gaps in young people’s opportunities that have worsened as a result of COVID-19 (but which were present before that). We need to actively involve more young people in conversations about how to solve this problem. We will do this in the first instance by identifying key young people who could be involved in the strategic conversations that are taking place. We will also seek the views of young volunteers across Midlothian more widely and listen to what they have to say on the issue.
How will evidence the benefits of youth social action?
We will see more volunteering opportunities for young people being set-up and becoming established in 2021 and 2022. We’ll document young people’s experiences taking part in these new opportunities (and other pre-existing ones), and we will share their stories on our new website about what has changed for them as a result of volunteering.
How will you recognise and celebrate young people’s impact?
- We will include a special section on young people’s volunteering at our Volunteer’s Week 2021 ceremony.
- We will look to into holding a special promotional/thank you event for young active citizens and volunteers in Midlothian in 2021.
- We will do a comms campaign on young volunteering.
- We will promote the Saltire Awards and we will identify more Saltire Ambassadors.