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Driving to success

09 September 2008

I was talking to a driving instructor recently, and was reminiscing about my terrifying glory days kangaroo-jumping around behind an L-plate.  He told me that driving instructors face an even more difficult task these days, as many of the young people they are instructing either stopped attending school...

For the last twenty years we have had dynasties in the White House.  The Clinton and the Bush families have occupied the number one slot and demonstrated the support network that brings to great, if opportunistic (or some may say exploitative), effect.   Not much disaffected young people can relate to. ...

I'm excited and slightly apprehensive about giving up my job on 7th November 2008.  Not permanently you understand, simply as part of the second 11 MILLION Takeover Day.  My job is going to be taken by a young person for the day.  The previous Takeover involved 400 organisations, giving 10,000 children...

At its policy forum last weekend, Labour joined all the other mainstream British political parties in committing to lowering the franchise to 16 in its next election manifesto.  All to the good you might think.  Surely fostering young people's civic engagement is what all of us are aiming to do?  But...

  The child poverty issue has raised its head again, and brings with it the familar feelings of guilt, hopelessness and frustration.  Unless you're Gordon Brown or (hopefully) Barack Obama there's very little you can do.  But it made me think about poverty of thought.   In the meritocracy that...

Boris Johnson has confounded doubts about his capability to be London mayor by making some interesting appointments in his first couple of weeks.  In particular he has recruited Ray Lewis as deputy mayor with responsibility for young people.  Ray is a former prison governor and founder of the East Side...

Yesterday I attended the Innovation Exchange Festival of Ideas.  The Innovation Exchange was set up by the Office of the Third Sector to stimulate new ideas and approaches.  It has identified two areas to focus on initially: independent living and disadvantaged young people, the second of which has an...

Last week I attended a briefing on the government’s new MyPlace programme, a £190m investment in youth facilities across England.  It is clearly very exciting that the government is making this kind of commitment, and there is no doubt that the youth building stock is in dire need of revitalisation. ...

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Future leaders

25 January 2008

It’s been a good start to the New Year for Changemakers - we have been commissioned by the DCSF to do a feasibility study on the proposed new National Institute for Youth Leadership.   Over the next few weeks we will be convening groups of experts from all sections of society and civic life to gather...

Organising your database is like picking up your dry cleaning – you avoid it for ages but once you do the feeling of virtue is so overwhelming you cannot understand why you didn’t do it before.    We are just girding our loins, waiting the arrival of the management consultants who are magically doing...