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Youth Engagement in Museums

A presentation about the positives of youth engagement in museums created by Jake Walton, a youth work apprentice with Pompey in the Community.

Jake Walton

on 2 April 2014

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Transcript of Youth Engagement in Museums

Youth engagement in museums
Use of social networks
Twitter - Easy for people to find you
Facebook - Can use to contact YP
A blog - Keep public up to date

Leaflets are a great way of attracting young people.
simple, bold and direct
Include an email and number
Consider your targeted age range
Small enough to grab and go
Ensure that your sessions are free
A solid number of young people that attend every session with several others who come when they can. A reliable group allow the project to keep rolling.

Give the young people reasons to be there. If it's just for fun ensure it is so. Give them attainable targets and goals to aim for.

Make sure that they have responsibility and a say in decision making. Decide how much of an impact they can have.

Phase 1
For the first session you may want to offer something to draw them in. Free food and drink, a little gift pack or something along those lines.

Include lots of fun, relaxed icebreakers.
Get them interested by explaining the possibilities and incentives.
Give them the chance to make early friendships, this will increase the chance of them returning.

Phase 2
Begin paving the way to your outcomes by establishing fun, fulfilling and meaningful sessions regularly with engaged and enthusiastic young people. Give them the tools needed to help them drive towards the objectives in an enjoyable and enriching environment.
Friendly and welcoming staff with knowledge of the subject.
A relaxed, safe and engaging environment for young people.
Exciting and realistic goals.
An incentive for young people to come.
A definite time, date and place that remains the same.
Leaflets are a great way of advertising your project. These can be handed out easily in many places:
Schools and colleges
Shopping centers
Community centers
Sports clubs
Family events
It is very important for young people to have an incentive or a goal. The main thing is that they are achievable.
Trips and days out
Awards and qualifications
Improved CV
Increased employability

Before you start your project decide on how much responsibility you are going to give your group of young people. This should be decided on their age, maturity and ability.

Effective youth participation is about creating opportunities for young people to be involved in influencing,
shaping, designing and contributing to policy and the development of services and programmes.

Decision making
Results for young people
Results for the museum

Results for the staff
Improved self confidence
Build their CV's
Spark an interest in museum work
Build new relationships
Structure to their lives
A way to put their passion and interest to good use
Helps with college and university applications
Great overall for their knowledge
Young people's perspectives
Attract a new audience range
Possibility for funding
Gain extra publicity through youth/community engagement
An insight into young people and how they work
Refreshing and challenging
Learn new skills, techniques and approaches
Looks great on a CV
May open doors for other jobs
Phase 3
Once the project comes to an end (natural finish or no future funding) there are ways it can be continued.

Apprenticeships for YP
Possible work experience
Ambassadors in new projects
Permanent exhibitions/pieces
Evolve the group into a new project (Can customize with group input)
Hepworth Wakefield Youth Panel
Since October 2011, the group have coordinated two silent discos, a music and fashion night responding to an exhibition, monthly film and gaming nights, amongst other things
The Youth Panel meet twice a month to plan and host events for local young people in Wakefield.
Kate Morgan from the Hepworth Wakefield art gallery runs a Youth Panel for young people aged 16-19 years old.
What do they do?
Young people were asked why they joined
‘I think the youth panel allows the young people of Wakefield to get their views across, I have met some like-minded people through joining who I am now friends with.’
‘The reason why I am in the youth panel is because in very passionate about art and enjoy doing it in my spare time. With working through the week the youth panel gives me a chance or carrying on learning and practicing art in my spare time.... ‘
The D-Day+Youth Project
In June 2013 Pompey in the Community and Portsmouth City Museums received funding from Arts Council England to create a project aimed at getting young people in Portsmouth involved in the D-Day story, keeping it alive forever. Both organizations involved had their specialties which made the project a huge success. Museum staff gained valuable experience working with young people in different situations whilst the PiTC staff got an insight into how museums tick and the work involved. At the very start of the program PiTC were able to use their relationships with young people to get good numbers on the Youth Advisory Board sessions immediately. This original group then formed a solid number of young people returning week in week out.
Young People
Most museums don't have many connections with young people so it might be a good idea to speak to local organizations or groups who deal directly with young people. With the D-Day+Youth Project Portsmouth Museums worked with Pompey in the Community with great success.
Pompey in the community
Police Community Support Officers
Youth Clubs/Groups
Scouts/Brownies etc
Achievable targets
Having interesting and achievable targets to aim for is critical for young people. Without these the sessions will seem pointless. The YAB have designed and created a museum exhibition and produced a documentary called The Untold Chapter which will be shown around Portsmouth.
Enjoyable Sessions
By making your sessions interesting and fun you increase the chances of young people returning and increase productivity. If sessions are fun young people will be relaxed and make friends, increasing the likelihood of them committing to the program. With the D-Day Project we keep the sessions fun by mixing them up with filming, planning the exhibit, trips and more.
D-Day Youth Advisory Board
Regular Attendance
It is really important to have a set number of young people attending every week as this keeps the project moving forwards. Most programs have a core attendance and then several young people who float in and out. YAB has 10 members that always come then several who come when they can.
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