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Youth Conference 2012

Preston Youth Conference 2012 gathered together 130 young people (Years 7-13) from across schools in Preston. The conference was led by members of Preston Youth Council and Preston's Children and Young People's Trust Partnership. Around 180 delegates attended the event, which was held at Preston College.

The purpose of the event was to enable young people to express their views about a range of pre-planned topics including how they should be engaged in the work of the Children and Young People's Trust Partnership.  In the run up to the event the Youth Council, the Young People's Service (YPS) and its partners arranged a series of Youth Forums across the city to see what topics should be the subject of workshops at the conference.

On the day, delegates were welcomed by members of Preston Youth Council and John Gordon, Head of the Young People's Service, formally opened the conference.  The conference included a number of presentations:

  • Helen Denton, Executive Director for Children and Young People, explained the role of the Children and Young People's Trust Partnership
  • Grant Murdoch, Operations Manager for the Young People's Service, outlined how the new Youth Strategy Action Plan would shape services for young people in the future.
  • Edward, Preston Youth Council, outlined how the group was working with the Positive Activities and Engagement Group of the Trust Partnership to influence the progress of the action plan.
  • Fatima, Lancashire Youth Council Executive Member and Guy Topping, Chair of the New Youth Zone Plus Management Group, outlined plans for a brand new youth centre for the city, which is due to open in April 2014.

Events and workshops were held during the lunch break, including:

  • DJing workshop
  • Dance workshop
  • Go4it website demos
  • Sport challenges me
  • A demonstration by Emergency Services of a rescue from a crashed vehicle to show the dangers of using mobile phones in cars

Partners were involved in delivering afternoon workshops on a range of topics including:

  • Positive Activities and Young People's Event
  • Preston Youth Council
  • Preston City
  • Police
  • Preston Youth Zone +
  • Drugs and Alcohol
  • Social Media
  • Transport
  • Education
  • Health

Young people's views were captured through the workshops and feedback from a voice and influence workshop held in the morning was written up into a 'Big Book of Ideas'.  This feedback will be analysed and findings presented to the Trust Partnership Board to establish future arrangements for young people's involvement.

What worked well...

Preston College's new Media and Performing Arts Theatre and Foyer provided an ideal venue for the 180 participants on the day.  Participants were fully engaged and those supporting the event were well briefed.


The outcomes from the day are being collated for presentation to Preston CYP Trust Partnership.

Views about aspects of the Youth Offer were expressed by 120 participants, offering ideas about how young people could be involved and areas of concern that could form CYP Trust priorities for the future.  Preston Youth Council was promoted as a key means for young people to get involved locally and to become linked to the new Youth Zone Plus development.

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