THE NSPCC has today opened applications for its Young People’s Board For Change.
The children’s charity is looking to recruit 15 young people aged 13 to 16 years old to join the board to help to play a defining role in the NSPCC’s mission to prevent child abuse.
The board was first launched in February 2021 with the aim to give young people the chance to shape and influence the work of the UK’s leading child protection charity.
Any young person from the UK can apply and if they secure a place, they can use this platform to raise awareness of what matters most to young people, take action and make change happen – while also having a key role advising NSPCC staff and trustees.
Over a two-year period, board members will take part in residentials, meetings and workshops, meet other young people, as well as develop confidence and learn life-long skills, such as campaigning and public speaking.
Over the past two years, the current board members have taken part in a vast range of activities and events, and they’ve consulted on some of the charity’s biggest campaigns.
This includes a wide range of work to support the NSPCC’s Wild West Web campaign to influence the Government to introduce a robust Online Safety Bill to ensure young people are safe online.
Members have had the chance to speak to MPs and decision-makers in Westminster, attend the Labour and Conservative party conferences to take part in a round-table discussion and share their views with MPs, and recently they spoke at an event in the House of Lords to share why the Online Safety Bill is so vital for them.
They’ve also worked to help shape the work of Childline, including creating content for the service’s social channels on topics that matter to them including Pride month, Black History Month, body image, and bullying recovery.
And they also supported the creation of NSPCC’s new secondary school service, Talk Relationships. They shared their perspectives of healthy relationships education and input into every stage of the development of the service.
When asked about what she’s enjoyed the most about being a member for the past two years, Nirucha aged 17 said: “Being on the board has been a completely unique, fun, and rewarding experience.
“It has provided me with once-in-a-lifetime opportunities such as visiting parliament to speak with Lords and MPs about my views, and the chance to meet and develop friendships with an amazing group of likeminded young people.
“We have been given an amazing sense of responsibility and many chances to share our views on topics such as relationships, social media, and the work of Childline.
“Most importantly, my fellow members and I have had the feeling of being heard throughout the past few years. It is an experience that will stick with me all my life.”
Zazie Clarke, NSPCC Participation Team Manager said:
“I’m excited for a new group of young people to join our Young People’s Board, to share more ideas and insight.
“The past two years with our current members have been fantastic and I’ve been impressed by their genuine passion for the NSPCC and Childline’s work, and their commitment to getting involved and making a difference.
“At the NSPCC we are determined to make sure we embed the views of young people at the heart of everything we do.
“Children are the experts on their own lives, and there is so much that we can learn from their experiences.
“I’d encourage anyone who is interested in having a platform to get young people’s voices heard to apply.
“There are many great opportunities that you’ll be able to get involved in to help influence change and represent what matters most to young people.”
Visit nspcc.org.uk/boardforchange to apply and applications close on the 23rd of January.