Tuesday, 4 December 2012

Being a Changemaker at New Writing North

I’m pleased to finally be able to bring you news of a very interesting writing project that I formally started today. I’m working as a Changemaker on a 5 month placement at New Writing North, developing a new, youth-led creative writing project which seeks to document the opinions, concerns and frustrations of various young people in Tyneside and Northumberland.

For those of you who don’t know, Changemakers are a fantastic national youth leadership charity who happen to have a base in Newcastle. I got involved with them in September after successfully applying to work with and be trained by them. Changemakers organise leadership development modules alongside placements at host organisations, helping young people to gain real-world experience. New Writing North, who I’ve had involvement with in the past, are one of the hosts this year. The Changemakers mission is simple: “To create a world in which young people have the confidence to lead in employment, public life and society at large, and everyone understands that we need them to.”

So, what am I actually going to be doing? Well, in a nutshell, I’m hoping to collate a collection of creative writing by 15-25 year olds that deals, first-hand, with their experiences of ‘being a young person in uncertain times.’ As a young person who’s directly been effected by societal change and uncertainties, I think that the project is incredibly timely and has huge potential to open up a dialogue for, by and between young people and their peers within their communities and in the wider world. On the eve of George Osborne’s Autumn Statement, when we expect him to announce that austerity measures may have to be carried out until 2018, and with news of arts cuts in Newcastle over the past fortnight, I think this project has potential to become incredibly pertinent and I hope that it can bring young people’s concerns on these and other matters to the wide audience they deserve.

I’ll blogging as the project develops, but using a separate Tumblr site, which you can find here: www.uncertaintimesnwn.tumblr.com

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