Scotland’s youngsters do more for their community than others

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Survey finds more 10-20 year olds in Scotland are taking steps to improve their surroundings than in the rest of the UK

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30th November 2015 by Paul Cardwell 0 Comments

More young people in Scotland are involved in social action than in the rest of the UK.

A survey by the #iwill campaign found 44% of 10-20 year olds were taking steps to improve their society, compared with the UK average of 42%.

The survey, produced to celebrate the 2nd anniversary of the campaign, also found that 70% of 10-20 year-olds were interested in taking part in the future, but many didn’t think there were enough opportunities to take part.

I love encouraging other people to volunteer because I know how I’ve changed because of what I do

#iwill is a UK wide campaign supported by Prince Charles and the main political parties aiming to increase the number of young people involved in activity that makes a difference to their community, society or environment.

It aims to increase the number of 10-20 year olds volunteering as well as recognising the role of older volunteers in creating the opportunities and support for youth volunteering.

In Scotland 7 #iwill ambassadors are encouraging everyone to get involved in their community.

This includes sharing the benefits of and information on how volunteer, mentor, campaign, fundraise and more.

Natasha Lawson, aged 18 from East Dunbartonshire, is an ambassador.

Speaking at an event in the Sky Academy Skills Studio in Livingston to mark the campaign’s anniversary, she said: “I set a community action project at my school, Bishopbriggs Academy, after training as an East Dunbartonshire Voluntary Action Volunteer Champion, which I couldn’t wait to put to good use!

“I love encouraging other people to volunteer because I know how I’ve changed because of what I do.”

18 year old Jordan Abernathey from Dundee said of his role as chair of his local LGBT Youth Scotland youth committee: “No one should be a bystander. If I can make even one person feel more comfortable then I have helped make a better society.”

#iwill Scotland is organised by YouthLink Scotland. Education Scotland has pledged its support for the campaign as has Young Scot.

Young Scot chief executive Louise Macdonald welcomed the focus on the difference young people make in their communities.

She said: “We never cease to be amazed by young people’s passion and commitment to making things better for everyone – and we are delighted that the #iwill campaign will celebrate these young people and we hope it will inspire even more.”

Minister for children and young people Aileen Campbell added: “Every young person in Scotland should have access to opportunities to make a difference, whatever their background. That’s why initiatives like the #iwill campaign are so important, and a fantastic way to help young people develop work and life skills and benefit their communities.”