Youth Worker and Consultation and Participation Officer Le N Ho had become frustrated with the negative perception of young people in contemporary society – particularly in her local borough of Newham; just next door to Idea Shop’s mother ship in Canary Wharf. After a submitting a winning application for a £3,500 grant to develop a community campaign, Le came to Idea Shop to see how to make the money work hardest.
Knowing that at the source of the misconception is a lack of understanding and awareness, Le had planned to run a series of workshops and develop a magazine to highlight the achievements of hard working young people. After discussing the benefits of intergenerational activities it became clear that in order for these to work the negative perceptions of young people must first be challenged. Rather than investing in the production of a single magazine, using newly affordable and flexible production services such as Newspaper Club would allow newspapers to be produced and distributed to a dispersed audience, especially one with varying access to the internet. Also collaborating with successful young people such as designers, photographers and writers would allow for co-creation and provide role models to draw other young people engaged with the project. By capitalising on the popularity of basic digital tools such as camera phones the idea of co-creation could be extended to the wider audience.
Successfully accessing and communicating to young people is a challenge major brands with multi-million pound budgets are struggling with, let alone individuals with money & time pressures. Involving young people themselves in the creation of the communications and activities will help draw in others and help further elevate success stories from local area – such its track record in providing successful sports professionals and cultural icons such as Jermaine Defoe and the late Alexander McQueen – eventually providing a reason for the wider community to reconsider their views.
Post by Keiran Bradshaw