About the session:
Date: Thursday 10th June
Time: 2pm – 3pm
Over the past 30 years, there has been an increased emphasis on hearing the voice of young people. Yet, many youth workers report frustration at how seriously those voices are taken and are interested in creating more meaningful participation practice. For some, youth work is an overtly political act, yet others express concerns that the profession has lost its connection with political education. In professional practice, workers experience tensions between authenticity and indoctrination, with organisations often expecting workers to remain politically neutral.
This session will explore work with young people around democratic practice, youth voice, and political education. The session is part of the Experience, Express, Enact PhD research project from the University of Huddersfield. Participants will explore and share practice, learn from other practitioners and have the opportunity to inform research aimed at developing youth work that supports young people’s involvement in democracy.
About Roy Smith:
Roy Smith has been a Youth Worker for the past 20 years. He has a background in Detached Youth Work and is currently Operations Manager for Medway Youth Service. In 2012, he completed an MA in European Studies of Youth Work and Social Disadvantage with the University of Bedfordshire, researching the perceptions and experiences of young activists on the relationship between the internet, social media, and their political and community participation.
He is currently working on a PhD at the University of Huddersfield, researching young people’s democratic socialisation and political participation. Roy is an experienced trainer and has also taught postgraduate students in Youth Work and Senior Leadership and Management at YMCA George Williams College.