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Youth Council pledges to make young people’s voices heard

[Friday 09 January 2009]
Richmondshire District Youth Council
Photograph shows all the members who have been appointed
to serve on Richmondshire District Youth Council this year, at
their meeting in the Council Chamber at Swale House,

YOUNG people in Richmondshire now have a new way to make a real difference to the issues that matter to them.

Richmondshire District Youth Council (RDYC) now has more than twenty members, all aged between 12 and 19, whose job it is to represent the views of young people across the district.

New members were appointed to RDYC following district-wide elections held in October 2008. The new council now meets on a monthly basis, and any young person in Richmondshire is welcome to attend and have their say.

According to its formal, written constitution put together by the original members of RDYC – which was adopted at a meeting in December 2008 – the Youth Council aims to:

  • communicate its views to other authorities,
  • give young people an active role in the local community and the ability to make and influence decisions,
  • work with other groups representing young people,
  • work with other groups to provide and distribute information on youth events and youth organisations,
  • aid and support the development of youth events and youth organisations in Richmondshire.

The Council also has fundraising powers and its own budget, and distributes grants to clubs and organisations involving young people. Last year it distributed thousands of pounds, and is now actively seeking more bids for funding. It also investigates issues raised by members, and has already met to discuss waste and recycling in Richmondshire.

We hold meetings every month and we welcome all those young people who have ideas to help improve where we all live

Tracey Higgins - Richmondshire District Youth Council

The Youth Council has elected Tracey Higgins as Chairman, to serve a three-month term. It has also appointed a Treasurer and a Communications Officer to serve for a period of one year.

Youth Council spokesperson Charlotte Galvin said: “The Youth Council is a great way of knowing what is happening in your area. Richmondshire is a relatively small community that we all live in – and it isn’t just the adults who should get a say in what happens here.

“As a Youth Council we have the power to help change Richmondshire – but only with the help of others. We hold meetings every month and we welcome all those young people who have ideas to help improve where we all live.

“As much as we can we will try and get issues noticed, by calling officials to meetings and providing funding whenever we as a council deem it appropriate – that’s why we want as much support from young people as possible!”

To find out more about the Council, or to apply for funding, email rdyc@richmondshire.gov.uk, or visit richmondshire.gov.uk/rdyc. Youth Council meetings are open to the public, and everyone is welcome. Meetings are usually held on the first Wednesday of every month, starting at 4.15pm in Swale House, Richmond. The next meeting will take place on January 7, and the following on February 4.

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