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Youth Voice and Participation for Senior Managers: How to develop a culture of shared decision-making with young people

This course was delivered online using Zoom.


Lawrence Becko, Jennifer Raven

Young people’s futures have been thrown into further uncertainty by the COVID pandemic. Given the crisis, it’s more important than ever that organisations can listen to young people and understand their needs and desires. In this light, we have decided to offer to proceed with this training event and invite you to join us online for a newly configured session.

For this to be as useful as possible for you, we will incorporate time to talk about how the current crisis impacts on your youth engagement and plans for developing a culture of youth voice in your organisations. What should be the priorities during the crisis? How can time and resources be used now to lay foundations for effective youth voice later? What does this mean for your organisation’s strategy in the short, medium and long-term?

Beyond this, the training day will still focus on the advertised objectives:

  • Through interactive activities, group work and knowledge-sharing, you will discover the importance and benefits of consulting young people and including them in shared decision-making. You will explore how this approach can be implemented and how you can successfully embed this within your team culture and organisation.
  • You will transform how you think about your organisations’ approach to work that involves children and young people. We will introduce you to the core principles of Youth Voice and Participation and explain what makes it such a powerful driver for your organisation.

Please note that this session is designed for senior managers, senior leaders and directors of organisations whose work aims to improve the lives of children and young people. You may wish to develop your team’s capacity to consult and listen to young people, or be looking to shape the culture or approach of your organisation or board. You may be new to youth voice or looking to develop your understanding of this approach.

What is the benefit of listening to children and young people? How can you involve young people in organisational decision-making? How can this approach lead to change and transformation?

Join the Facebook event page here>


Lawrence Becko

Lawrence is a facilitator, consultant and ILM Level 7 Accredited Coach with a specialism in youth voice, participation and leadership. He has worked in arts and culture for over ten years and has also had a successful career in the commercial music industry. As a strategic consultant he has advised on organisational change for a diverse range of organisations working across music, theatre, dance, poetry, carnival, film and television. He has previously worked for Sound Connections, developing youth voice programmes, training and consultancy. He is currently the lead facilitator of A New Direction’s Connected Lab, a peer learning programme for cultural managers, and advisor to the Kinetika Bloco Leadership Programme for young jazz talent. He mentors and coaches emerging artists and mid-career professionals in the cultural sector and creative industries, and is the Chair of Fairbeats Music, a charity working with young refugees in south London.

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Jennifer Raven

Jennifer Raven is Deputy Director of Sound Connections, where she has worked since 2014. One of Jenn’s main roles is leading the Sound Connections consultancy service with a focus on evaluation, research and youth voice. Most recently she has evaluated BSO Change Makers, Live Music Now, the National Open Youth Orchestra and NYMAZ (North Yorkshire Music Action Zone). In October 2019 she is excited to be travelling to Lebanon and Jordan to evaluate Action for Hope’s music programme for refugees – her first international evaluation project!

Before joining Sound Connections, Jenn worked within the music team at schools network Ark. In 2009 she co-founded Fairbeats – a charity with a focus on music-making for young refugees and new migrants – where she is now a Director. Jennifer is also a flute player and a Trustee of the South East London Orchestra where her role focuses on Community Development.

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