How young people are shaping the future of the NSPCC

The last year has had a huge impact on young people and they need support in the coming year, which means listening to what they have to say.

As we start looking towards and building a better future, it’s vital young people’s voices are represented. We're calling on the Government to put young people at the centre of its recovery plans, their views and experiences of the last year must be listened to.

They'll use the platform to raise awareness of what matters most to young people, take action and make change happen – while also having a key role advising staff and trustees.

The pandemic has had a huge impact on young people, with the our Childline service carrying out more than 61,000 counselling sessions on mental health since the start of the first lockdown in March last year.

“This role is a chance to make positive change in the world with other like-minded teenagers. I will enjoy being able to be a part of helping create an environment where all young people regardless of gender, sexuality or race have equal and fair chances to make their way in the world and to always feel safe.”

- Will, 15, Board member

Over a two-year period, members will be involved in sharing what’s important to them, take part in residentials, meetings and workshops, and campaign to share their views and opinions.

After meeting virtually for the first time on Tuesday 30 March, members said they're excited about getting started in their new roles. They're also keen to talk about the impact of the last year and what needs to be done to support young people in the coming months.

“The past year has been tough for everyone, but for young people who have had to go from socialising everyday with hundreds of students a day to being alone all day every day for months and then back to school again recently, it’s been an especially turbulent time, so I think the most important thing young people need coming out of the pandemic is understanding, patience and to be listened to.”

- Elan, 16, Board member

“The last year has changed the lives of many young people across the UK but, as we now look to the future, the new members of our Young People’s Board for Change have a great opportunity to make their voices heard.

We believe that a generation of young people should not be defined by the pandemic, so it has never been more important to listen to them and embed their views into everything we do. Children are the experts on their own lives, and there is so much that we can learn from their experiences.”

- Lucy Read, NSPCC Associate Head of Participation