What Does Participation Mean?

Participation gives you the opportunity to have a say in matters that affect you. As explained in Article 12 of the United Nations Convention on the Right’s of the Child (UNCRC), children and young people have a right to be involved about decisions that impact their lives, and their future.

NYAS offer a variety of participation activities across both England and Wales. These opportunities enable you to have your voice heard, be actively involved in decision making, and create measurable, positive change across our services, campaigns and wider government policies. At the same time, you have the chance to develop your own skills, and taking part in young people's participation provides great examples for future job applications and interviews.

We want children and young people of all ages, genders, sexual identities, ethnicities and backgrounds to take part in our youth participation. By sharing your thoughts, feelings and experiences, you can ensure that our work makes a difference to care-experienced children and young people.

What Youth Participation Activities are Available?

NYAS offers a range of youth participation activities across England and Wales. Their levels of commitment are varying - some projects feature ongoing, regular meetings, whilst other opportunities may be a singular event. Young people's participation is essential to NYAS' development, and our opportunities include:

  • Helping to design and deliver campaigns that raise awareness about issues that matter to young people
  • Guest blogging/vlogging on our digital channels to share your experience
  • Providing feedback about our services and publications to help us improve 
  • Supporting our recruitment by interviewing members of staff and volunteers
  • Raising awareness of certain topics by sharing your personal experience 
  • Organising, attending and representing NYAS at supporter events
  • Creating, completing and promoting surveys to help us improve what we do
  • Providing us with your thoughts about what new services or projects would benefit you
  • Sharing our digital content through your personal social media channels

We also offer a range of specific youth participation activities across England and Wales. Each opportunity is outlined in detail further down this page.

If you're interested in any of the youth participation activities above, you can email Tell us what activity you're interested in, why you are interested in participating at NYAS and your location. 

What are the Benefits of Participation?

Taking part in youth participation activities has a broad range of benefits. These include: 

  • Connecting with other young people
  • Improving your confidence levels
  • Making a positive difference in your local community and beyond
  • Good experience for your CV and job or higher education applications.
  • Developing a range of skills through training, like vlogging/blogging, writing content, supporting research, 
  • Opportunities to influence and have your voice heard
  • The chance to attend fun events and network with professionals
  • Rewards such as certificates, work experience, and sometimes vouchers.

Explore NYAS' Youth Participation Opportunities

Below, we've outlined all of the specific young people's participation projects that you can get involved with at NYAS. Opportunities will vary by
location, so we have detailed where each activity takes place, and more inforamtion about the participation project:

NYAS National Campaigns Advisory Group (England and Wales)

NYAS works with national government and local decision makers across England and Wales, to help them understand what issues matter to young people. We campaign and influence key decision makers to improve services for care experienced children and young people across these areas.

We are looking for care leavers aged 18-25 to join our NYAS Campaigns Advisory Group. You can learn more about this participation project on our website, and full training and support will be provided before you begin.

Bright Sparks Youth Club in Cardiff (Wales Only)

This youth participation activity is open to care experienced children and young people aged 11 -25 who are involved with Cardiff Children’s Services.

This is a great opportunity for you to meet other care experienced young people, take part in fun activities and have a say about Cardiff Children’s Services, and other relevant organisations.

Bright Sparks will meet fortnightly on a Thursday between 5pm – 7pm. At the moment, we meet online. You can learn more below.

NYAS Cymru Young Person’s Advisory Group (Wales Only)

At NYAS, we make sure we are keeping children and young people at the heart of everything we do. NYAS Cymru's Young Person's Advisory Group is made up of young people who have accessed our NYAS Services across Wales. They advise on a range of issues and services, and help to ensure that the work of NYAS Cymru and beyond is truly reflective of the issues which matter to young people.

The Young People’s Advisory Group (YPAG) creates opportunities for young people to become change makers in Wales. Through this youth participation group, you can influence policy/legislation, create campaigns and evaluate practice.  Young people can take part in recruitment processes for NYAS Cymru and ensure that our services are developed with, and by, care experienced young people.  

Meetings for this youth participation activity take place at 4:30pm on the first Wednesday of each month.

Peer Advocacy and Peer Mentor Training (Wales Only)

There is also an offer for all young people across Wales to undertake accredited training and gain a qualification as a Peer Advocate and/or a Peer Mentor.

The training takes place over three sessions and provides the opportunity for young people to develop their communication and relationship building. They also have the chance to further understand the principles of peer mentoring and relevant legislation.

The next short course for Peer Mentoring starts on March 29th 2022.

Still Have Questions?

Got More Questions?

If you have any questions about NYAS' youth participation opportunities, just get in touch. Contact us by email, or give us a call.

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