Young people take the Town Hall by storm in Takeover Challenge

Published: Thursday 1st December 16

The Takeover Challenge saw 26 young people from Wandsworth take over the roles of senior decision makers for a day and get a glimpse behind the scenes of the working world.

A national annual event organised by the Children’s Commissioner for England, the Takeover Challenge gives young people the chance to work with adults for the day and be involved in decision making.

Students from schools and colleges across the borough took the reins in a number of departments including public health, youth services, communications, procurement, community safety and children’s services.

Young people were taken out on meetings, came up with new ideas and helped develop social media campaigns as well as public health initiatives.

The day also saw members of the Wandsworth Youth Council meet with the Leader of Wandsworth Council, Ravi Govindia, to discuss a range of topics important to young people in the borough.

Members of Wandsworth Youth Council meeting with Leader of Wandsworth Council Ravi Govindia

One of the students, 16-year-old Shumaila, shadowed members of the communications team. She posted on the council’s social media feeds, and helped come up with campaign ideas in a meeting with the public health team.

Shumaila has also written an article, which can be found in the next edition of Headstart magazine.

She said: “I have really benefited from such an opportunity as it has helped a previously quiet and unconfident person like me to finally step out of my comfort-zone and experience a career doing what I love: TO WRITE.”

Councillor Ravi Govindia said: “It was a pleasure to talk with local young people about issues that are important to them, and hear their views.

“Throughout the Takeover Challenge we have all been impressed by the students who took part, and the ideas they brought to the table.

“I hope that the experience has been as valuable for them as it has been for us, and that they have gained valuable insight as well as some contacts they might use in the future.”

The Wandsworth event was coordinated by the Wandsworth Youth Council, which gives local young people a voice in decision making. Find out more at www.wandsworth.gov.uk/youth.

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