The four newcomers replace four outgoing young trainers, bringing phase one of the initiative to an end. Active Involvement officer Bill Badham said: "When we advertised there was a tremendous response, resulting in a very high quality application list. These represented the cream of young people's activism, and some of the individual stories were extraordinary.
We then had an interview process on 31 March that involved the outgoing trainers interviewing the newcomers. This meant that young people were involved throughout the recruitment process."
All four young trainers have already achieved much locally and have succeeded in creating opportunities for young people to speak out, or helped other young people and adults within their communities. For their two-year contract, the young trainers will follow a similar format to the outgoing trainers, who have collectively demonstrated the impact of the posts both with national and local government departments and with voluntary organisations. "We will work with them on a mix of speaking out on young people's issues and youth involvement at conferences and training events," said Badham.
"There will also be some advisory group work where they can continue to play an important role with organisations such as Cafcass. They'll also give valuable input to the latest versions of Hear by Right and Act by Right."
All four are still at school or college and their work will be based around their educational needs, most of it taking place during academic holidays. The NYA has been keen to draw on and build on the expertise and commitment demonstrated by the four outgoing trainers. One, Becky Sharp, is now employed by The NYA as an active involvement project officer, while the others - Ashley Sweetland, Neil Brimer and Tim Davies - are to form part of the wider NYA consultancy team.
- Bill Badham and Becky Sharp have been piloting a training package entitled Ready, Steady, Change! that aims to develop participation skills for both adults and young people. This will be the official training strand of the national Participation Practice Centre that The NYA has been involved in shaping, and will complement The NYA's own Act by Right.