Why we exist
The Medway Youth Council (MYC) started in 1998, as the Medway Youth Parliament, with our official launch in 1999. In September 2017, we changed our name to the Medway Youth Council, under the leadership of George Perfect.
It is a forum for young people – run by young people – we are totally independent but supported by Medway Council. MYC has two main roles in addressing issues raised by young people and acting as a consultative group for decision-makers.
Members represent their peers on MYC: ideally democratically elected from their school or youth group. We have a very good feedback framework which allows all young people to get their voices heard through their school councils, then their MYC representative, and if appropriate on to the UK Youth Parliament to be heard nationally.
The Whole Youth Council meets once a month, with Cabinet also meeting monthly setting the agenda for meetings from issues raised by members or sent in from outside people. Smaller meetings are organised, and operate much more frequently.
The Organisation Chair chairs both Full Youth Council, and Cabinet, and is responsible for the strategic leadership of the organisation. Our campaign for 2017-18 is bullying, with our annual conference in November for young people.
Medway Youth Council holds two non-voting members on the Medway Council Children and Young People Overview and Scrutiny committee.
The first post is held by the Chair, and the second by another Cabinet member within the Youth Parliament.
The Children and Young People Overview and Scrutiny Committee scrutinizes services and policies relating to children’s services, throughout Medway.
Its remit includes early years, education, youth justice, social care, children and family services and scrutiny of children’s health.
National Youth Parliament
The Medway Youth Council is a full member of the British Youth Council, and part of the national youth councils network.
The UK Youth Parliament has 300 (directly, and indirectly) elected Members of Youth Parliament aged 11-18. Members of Youth Parliament are elected in annual youth elections throughout the UK. Any young person aged 11-18 can stand or vote.
In the past two years one million young people have voted in UK Youth Parliament elections. Once elected Members of Youth Parliament organise events and projects, run campaigns and influence decision makers on the issues which matter most to young people.
All Members of Youth Parliament meet nationally twice a year at the UK Youth Parliament Annual Sitting and UK Youth Parliament House of Commons Sitting.
What nationally is the role of Local Youth Councils?
Local youth councils are forums that represent the views of young people at a local level. Run by young people for young people, they give young people a voice and enable them to make their views heard in the decision-making process.
They give young people the chance to discuss relevant issues, engage with decision makers and contribute to improving the lives of young people within their communities.
There are currently over 620 youth councils active across the UK. They work with all levels of local government including Parish and Community Councils as well as Unitary Authorities, Borough and County Councils.