Power of Youth Explained

The Power of Youth Explained is a six-part series of short interactive, digital articles curated by #iwill partner organisations and Ambassadors. The series aims to bring together research, experiences and resources that not only develops the readers’ knowledge and understanding of youth social action, but helps them turn it into action. They are also designed to help your organisation put your Power of Youth Charter commitments into practice.

ARTICLE 4:

Why and how should your organisation work in partnership with others to support youth social action?

HRH The Prince of Wales meeting #iwill Ambassadors at the #iwill Advisory Council 2019

A LETTER FROM THE CURATORS:

Hello and welcome!

Youth social action is all about young people making a positive difference to others. Therefore, successful projects often involve lots of other people, groups, and organisations. Through effective partnerships young people are able to take advantage of existing structures, expertise, and resources to make their actions more powerful than they might have been otherwise. And working in partnership means that young people are able to influence change in new and exciting places.

There’s also lots of organisations out there who want to support young people lead change. The #iwill campaign and its supporters are testament to that. Each partner has learnt so much over the last ten years to develop brilliant youth social action. Effective collaboration helps us share and spread that work, involve more young people, and accelerate the change they want to see in the world.

This collection of resources, collated by Liverpool FC Foundation, Team London, and #iwill Ambassador Joana Baptista,  is here to give you a snippet of inspiration with examples of great partnerships that have created real impacts. If you want to know more, don’t hesitate to get in touch.

ACROSS THE SECTORS

Below are some brilliant examples of how partnership for youth social action can work, regardless of which sector you are in. Take a look:

Education
HEALTH
Environment
Voluntary/Public

VIEWPOINT: Why working in partnership is important for social action

#iwill Ambassador Joana Baptista

My brother once described social action as a puzzle with 7.8 billion pieces, where each individual, unique piece represents one of the individual, unique people on this planet. One piece may represent a grandfather in Japan, another a teacher in Angola, and another an infant in Chile. One of those pieces is me, and one of those pieces is you. With only two hands and one brain, there is only so much social action I, or anyone, can do on our own. And this is where partnership steps in. We can achieve so much more by working together!

#iwill Ambassador Joana Baptista

I’ve been fortunate enough to work in partnership with numerous groups and witness first-hand the impact it can have. For example, since the Women of the Future (WOF) Ambassador program worked in collaboration with Lloyds TSB, hundreds of girls each year around London have been able to benefit from inspirational mentors across the WOF Awards Programs and learn invaluable skills from CV building through to public speaking.

This is just one of a multitude of partnership examples that I have had the privilege of experiencing and benefiting from, and goes to show the size of the impact that we can have when we work together. Just like the pandemic has shown us, each cog in the greater mechanism has a role to play in ensuring that we can create and solve some of the world’s greatest challenges.

Partnership can be as little as me working with my brother, also an #iwill Ambassador, to write a 2 minute speech on litter picking for him to say during a TEDx conference, or as big as governments acting on agreements to curb carbon emissions. All that matters for a successful partnership is that both work truly together towards a common cause they both care about. With curiosity, dedication and tenacity, any partnership can be as successful as those I’ve had the privilege of experiencing in my own life. Social action begins with one person, their two hands and their one brain, but social action takes flight when those hands join together.

WHO’S WORKING IN PARTNERSHIP?

Findings from the 2020 #iwill partner survey gives us a sense of how many organisations supporting youth social action are working in partnership to do so. For those who are working in partnership it also explores which sectors and organisations they’re likely to be working with. There’s more that can be done to work in partnership to ensure all young people have the opportunity to make the difference they want to in the world, so take a look at the below and think about what more your organisation could be doing.

91% of #iwill Partner Organisations are partnering with another organisation or young people to support social action

91%

Take a look at who these organisations are partnering with to support youth social action.
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FIVE TOP TIPS

  • Why do you want to collaborate? how will this enhance outcomes for your organisation and young people?
  • Have a clear understanding of how the proposed collaborative work is mutually beneficial and how it will enhance your provision and provide increased access to high quality social action opportunities for a wider range of children and young people
  • Understand the partner agencies goals, objectives and values and how working collaboratively will enable your organisation to support the partner organisation to achieve their goals as well as your own
  • Do your homework on the proposed partner organisation. Do they share your values? Is their work highly reputable? Will collaborating with a specific organisation enhance or damage your reputation?
  • Take the time to identify which organisations provide the best fit to meet the needs of children and young people participating within your programme
  • Do your homework, assess the potential benefits for both organisations for collaborative working before approaching the organisation. Understand organisational delivery strategy and key targets-assess how you can provide added value to their organisation by collaborating together and be prepared to present this information in initial meeting with the organisation
  • Communicate regularly to maintain strong professional relationships
  • Work with the partner organisation to develop a clear framework and agreements for partnership working
  • Be specific about goals, objectives, responsibilities and expectations. If developing a formal collaboration a Service Level Agreement could be designed
  • Set clear and measurable goals for your partnership work
  • Evaluate the impact of your collaborative work
  • Review the impact of your work on a regular basis
  • Share best practice
  • Be proactive on social media to showcase how your collaborative work is leading to increased benefits for programme participants and your organisations
  • Incorporate evaluation evidence into impact reports

VIEWPOINT: Women of the Future

#iwill Ambassador Joana Baptista reflects on Women of the Future Partnerships

The Women of the Future Awards are a platform that recognises successful women across Britain in a number of diverse sectors. Founded by Pinky Lilani CBE DL 14 years ago, with HRH The Countess of Wessex as their Global Ambassador and Cherie Blair as their patron, the awards now have a large and fruitful network of incredible past winners and shortlistees. It is these women who go on to be ambassadors for the Women of the Future Ambassador program. 

When Women of the Future first partnered with Lloyds TSB to deliver their Ambassador Program, neither were to expect the impact they would have on sixth-formers across London and the South East.

Focused on Collaboration and Kindness in Leadership, the collaboration between these two organisations has provided tangible role models to hundreds of students through school visits, company visits and an annual reception. Within each of these elements, partnership is prevalent throughout – connecting ambassadors with schools with the program and beyond. And as a result of each of these three strands working in partnership together, the pipeline of talent among Britain’s younger women is strengthened and broadened.

What this partnership shows is just one example of a much wider category of social action initiatives pairing with big businesses who care. Without the initiative of Pinky, one of the most wonderful people I’ve ever had the privilege of meeting, or the unwavering support of Lloyds TSB, the program would not be as successful as it is. Pinky’s ethos in every one of her programs focuses on kindness and collaboration. If we were all to foster that spirit going forward, and engages in partnerships that enhanced our communities, the world would be a much better place.

Find out more about the Women of the Future Programme.

MORE EXAMPLES OF WORKING TOGETHER

KEEP UP WITH THE POWER OF YOUTH EXPLAINED

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2021-02-24T10:17:53+00:00
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