Policy and Campaigns Manager, Roberta Antonaci gives an update on the Our Bright Future #owningit campaign.
With its 31 projects running across the UK, Our Bright Future is creating and improving many places and changing the lives of many young people across the four nations. We have already engaged more than 80,000 young people, breaking our original target of 60,000 young people by far.
It’s been a year since the launch of #owningit – our campaign to show how young people’s future is inextricably linked to the future of the environment and support positive change driven by young people. Now that we are about to launch its second phase I think it is the perfect moment to share some of our successes and give you a flavour of our exciting plans ahead.
This year’s most fascinating adventure has been collecting more than 700 ideas from young people and youth workers during eight events and youth-led research, involving more than 300 people across the UK. We asked them: “If you could change one thing for you and the environment, what would this be?” They replied that they wanted:
We will develop these three asks and use them to challenge decision makers, including Government, the private and the third sector, to think about young people and environment in a different way. #owningit is entering a new exciting phase. Now that we know the kind of change we want to make, how do we go about making it? We are very bold. Our Bright Future aims to be youth-led, so I’ve opened a discussion with the young people in the programme about how to turn the three key areas of change into a reality. The annual Youth Forum meet-up early in 2019 will focus on this – so, watch this space!
We’re also proud to have contributed to crucial Government work through active engagement of young people and youth workers in the programme. For example:
It is so important to create a legacy that reflects the breadth of the programme, reaching beyond Westminster to the devolved nations. That’s why I am excited that in Wales we are arranging a visit for 15 young people to the Welsh Government to learn more about policy-making and to get our messages across. The great thing about this event is that young people have been key part of its planning and delivery from day one.
Last, but not the least, we are going through our own internal revolution. Here’s how:
I firmly believe that youth voices should be at the centre of the decision-making processes that are having an impact on their lives and the environment. We have achieved so much in the first year of #owningit campaign and I can’t wait to see what comes next!