As a youth work apprentice for the Social Action Journey Fund, run by the National Youth Agency, I probably shouldn’t say that I’m not a big fan of the phrase ‘social action’ but I am great fan of what it means! Social action helps and empowers any person, especially young people, to really make a difference in the community where they live.
I have seen some great examples of really good things young people are doing in order to make where they live a better place. At one project I visited, the young people ran an event in order to raise awareness of knife crime. This group decided to raise awareness after someone they know who had sadly passed away in a knife crime attack. The group had a really successful event which helped to inform young people of the danger. They also had a football tournament which brought the community together. Another group helped to tidy up their community to make it more accessible for the people living there.
What’s really great is some companies are starting to get behind social action and are supporting young people to develop their ideas. Also, there are apps available that can help young people plan their social action projects. These things make it easier to get help and communicate with people.
I work with groups all over England to discover and explore what social action is. When the young people are thinking about what to do for a project, they think of things they are passionate about or something that has had a knock on effect for them or the local community. For example, one group I am working with are really interested in animals and are thinking about doing a wildlife conservation project, they also have good links with a local zoo. This is the kind of project that will benefit the whole community and that’s what social action is all about.