Nottingham city councillors and local MPs will be handing over the reins of power to the next generation tomorrow (Friday 25 November) when young people get the chance to take control of decision-making in the city.
Youngsters from the Youth Cabinet and Children In Care Council will spend the day buddying up with councillors, taking part in meetings, civic activities and neighbourhood walks together, and sharing decisions that councillors and MPs usually make on their own.
Senior city councillors are among those taking part in Takeover Day while Nottingham South MP Lilian Greenwood and Gedling MP Vernon Coaker will also have young buddies on board for the day.
It is part of the Children’s Commissioner’s Takeover Challenge, a national initiative to encourage organisations to engage with children and young people. The aim is to give authorities like councils access to new ideas and forward-thinking while giving young citizens a unique opportunity to learn how the world works.
Other projects taking place at the Council’s Loxley House headquarters include a team of young people taking over the restaurant, designing the menu and cooking for the day, and a takeover activity in the Communications and Marketing team.
Cllr Sam Webster, Portfolio Holder for Education, Employment and Skills, said: “Takeover Day gives young people a chance to experience a day in the life of the council while we get to hear their views and ideas for change at first-hand.
“Young people are interested in how the city works and they want to have their say about how things are run. It’s important we get their perspective and share some of our decisions with them.”
Dawnay Robinson, from the Youth Cabinet, is taking part in the buddying activity. She said: “I’ll be spending time in the community with my councillor finding out what local people need and making decisions about how we can help them. It’s great that young people have this chance to share power and bring our passion for change to the council.”
Nottingham City Council is committed to involving young people in decision making. Last year the Children’s Partnership Board adopted a new Participation Strategy to ensure the voice of young citizens is embedded in the decision-making processes of the Council and its partners.