Voyage will create an inspired leadership academy to provide a powerful framework to encourage educational progression, building skills and confidence whilst responding to disappearing youth provision and the ongoing spectre of youth related violence. The SHLA will reach out to its graduate community and offer access to its unique programme to 45 young people aged 15-17 years made up of half boys and half girls.
Voyage aims to launch the scheme in the half term of May 2016 after a 2-month recruitment campaign, which started in January 2015, and ends in late April 2016. It will take place at the Hackney Community College as a weekend and holiday programme. The SHLA will satisfy an increased demand for high quality, well-run, targeted provision aimed at bringing young graduate leaders of the YLFSC 2015- 2013 cohort together with young people from the local area and beyond.
The community urgently needs substantial programmes that can be set up quickly with the following aims:
- Offering unique progression opportunities
- Engaging with professionals to inspire possibilities
- Plugs gaps in local youth provision
- Operates at times when young people are available
This is due to observations that:
- Young people under 18 are not sufficiently engaged in effective youth provision in the area.
- Young people are not discussing issues around the recent levels of violence, death and arrests which mean young people invariably suffer in silence.
- Some young people are taking up arms and joining gangs to plan counter acts of violence.
- Young people maintain a tight wall of silence which we know helps to massage more feelings of isolation.
- Young people affected by severe incidents are being excluded from school and subject to police investigations.
Towards a youth led manifesto
Voyage has created a youth led Alumni called the Young Black Positive Advocates (Ybpa) which is a network for graduates of the Voyage Young Leaders for Safer Cities (YLfSC) course.
The aspiration and aim for the Ybpa is to build and sustain a solid foundation and network for young graduates and develop them as a collective leadership group whilst creating a powerful voice of young black Londoners.
The essential ambition is to extend the voice of our young leaders and encourage participation in their own communities in structures such as youth forums, councils, Independent advisory Groups and various consultative groups that host young people as part of their governance structures. We also want to assist young peoples engage in consultation on community safety and policing policies, procedures and programmes that effect young people in London.
Outcomes of participation in the Ybpa is to:
Empower young people to use their voice to create change
Transform our communities and make these more responsive to the needs of young people.
Sustain participation to enable progression and professional development whilst creating a platform to build lasting peace and collaboration between inner London postcodes.
The Ybpa will become a sustainable voluntary group within the next three years and is currently acting as BPACTs VOYAGEs youth policy advisors to our board of Trustees with two members occupying board positions from Nov 2014.