Council explore views of youths

BALLYMONEY Borough Council is considering seeking the views of local children and young people via social media and websites.

 During a recent Corporate and Central Services Committee meeting members were asked ‘to embrace and endorse the Participation Policy Statement of Intent from the NI Commissioner for Children and Young People (NICCY) and embark on a journey to become a model of good practice with regard to the participation of children and young people.’

The Committee considered the matter and members were in favour of supporting this initiative, noting some activity currently undertaken in seeking views of young people.

Heads of Service were then asked to cite examples of where the views of young people were sought and considered in relation to development of policy or delivery of services.

Their report continued: ‘While many council services are used by young people, no examples of their ideas being actively sought were given.

‘Some recent examples where Corporate Services have involved young people in events/activities include: the annual Local Democracy Week (LDW) when we engage with schools in borough; creation of unique bunting to dress town streets for jubilee 2012; International links programme (Vanves and Douglas) has had young people on exchange visits; worked with students at Northern Regional College performing arts, Cheers Youth Club and Green Pastures Church Volunteers to deliver Christmas entertainment; worked with NRC media studies students in the development of film projects (before and after documentary for our HLF bid to heritage lottery and historic record of civic occasions (freedom); and Dervock 2012 Olympic Torch event – we had a number of young adults as volunteers to assist in cleaning up of derelict sites and landscape areas in the village and also painting/cleaning derelict property.

‘While these are not directly relevant they provide a basis of contact which may be developed to address the intentions of the NICCY policy statement. ‘

It was proposed by Alderman Frank Campbell, seconded by Cllr Atkinson that Council explores entering into engagement with children and young people via social media and council website.