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How to stop an Islamophobic attack

I recently saw an article on A+ featuring a brilliant cartoon by 'Maeril' showing how you can stop an islamophobic attack in four easy steps.  The article repsonds to the growing frequency of such attacks.  However, the real beauty of the steps shown are that they could be applied to any kind of verbal abuse - whether it is bullying, racial motivated, anti-religious etc.

Click the image below to see the article 


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Sexual Consent

Sexual consent has been talked about extensively in the media of late. It is often described as being a 'complicated' issue, which can mean people are given more leaway than they should when they act without clear consent. They key to consent is communication - if in doubt ask! The person you need consent from is right there, ask them if it's OK! If they say no, are not able to respond (because they are too drunk, for example) or seem unsure or ill at ease then consent has not been given.

A couple of really useful analogies have been written which express how straightforward consent actually is, click on the images below to read these analogies.




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Make Your Mark!

Young people from Somerset's UK Youth Parliament have been working hard around the county to promote this years national UKYP 'Make Your Mark' campaign which will launch on Friday 12th August 2016.  The aim of Make Your Mark is to give young people across the UK a chance to vote on the issues that matter most to them and shape the topics discussed and debated at the UKYP House of Commons Live Debate in November.

undefinedAs a result of their efforts 15 schools and youth groups have pre-registered their commitment to take part in the consultation.   

Youth & Community Worker, Kate Darlington, who coordinates and supports the Somerset UK Youth Parliament group said 
"I am incredibly proud of the hard work the Somerset Members of Youth Parliament have put into the Mark Your Mark campaign already this year. Kira Lewis, MYP for Taunton Deane & West Somerset, in particular has shown amazing dedication and commitment to this and other areas of work with the group and is an excellent representative for the young people of Somerset."

Cllr Frances Nicholson, Cabinet Member for Children and Families at Somerset County Council said 
"Thank you and well done to the Somerset Members of the Youth Parliament for all their efforts in engaging Somerset children in the Make Your Mark campaign.  It's a good opportunity for children to have their say and so feed directly into the work of the UK Youth Parliament. It also gives schools and other youth organisations a powerful springboard for discussing and exploring the different issues that matter to young people."


Results will be announced on Tuesday 18 October 2016. 


Click here for more information on Make Your Mark. 


To find out more about Somerset  UK Youth Parliament - click here.


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UKYP Discrimination Project

Anyone who is familiar with the Somerset UK Youth Parliament will know that each of the three Members of Youth Parliament (MYPs) has chosen a manifesto area that they work on during their two year term of office. During the 2015-17 term the manifesto areas are:


  • Young people for a safer community
  • Promoting and empowering young people's voices
  • Young people's health and well being


The UKYP Advisory Group members support the MYPs with these manifestos, but have also decided to launch their own project in addition to this.

The Discrimination Project will consist of lots of research, small projects and the creation of resources etc. It is likely to develop and branch out in different directions within the theme of Discrimination. The project could even continue into the new UKYP term of office which starts in March 2017.

I have been lucky enough to see some of the resources that are being developed and the work done by the young people is really impressive. A page will be created within the UKYP section of this website to collate everything and make it available for everyone to see.

If you'd like a preview from the project, Chelsea White (MYP for Sedgemoor & Mendip) has produced an excellent insight into the topic of Feminism which you can download by clicking here.


Angela Derry
Project Support Officer - Youth & Community

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An inspirational day!

Sunday 11th October saw the Somerset Youth & Community Service Team at Taunton YMCA to support the Taunton Deane Youth Network's Youth Work Training Day.  The Taunton Deane Youth Network is a group of representatives from companies and organisations who are engaged in work with young people in the Taunton Deane area.  The network meets approximately four times a year to share ideas, news and expertise.

Earlier this year the network identified that there was a need for a training day.  This event would allow anyone involved in work with young people to attend workshops to improve their skills and network with others working in the field.  Somerset Youth and Community Service offered to support the event by coordinating the day and tutoring some of the workshops.  The event was launched in July and the bookings quickly started coming in.

The day went really well with 40 people attending and a staff team delivering eight different workshop options:

  • Youth worker roles & responsibilities
  • Young people's voice in their communities
  • Involving and developing volunteers within your youth work
  • Measuring learning outcomes in youth work
  • Inspiring youth work - how does your youth session buzz?
  • Funding applications - top tips and common pitfalls
  • Dealing with challenging behaviour
  • Sex, drugs and rock n' roll - how do we get the message across?

Our Service Manager, Jeff Brown, became the hero of the day when he stepped in to write and deliver a Funding Applications workshop at a couple of hours' notice when the original trainer was unable to make it.

It was a hectic but brilliant day.  A really wide range of people attended, bringing experience and knowledge from lots of perspectives.  In fact for most people there, the opportunity to network with other people was one of the highlights of the day. 

Responses to question "the thing I most enjoyed about the event was..." included:

"Being stimulated and challenged, meeting so many amazing people and being encouraged."

"Meeting a good range of organisations and individuals who are active in youth work."


Other quotes from the feedback included...

"I thought being in a youth club just meant turning up, I hadn't realised quite what a difference we make and how much support is out there."

Thank you for organising the event - well planned and executed.  Big pat on the back!"


Angela Derry
Project Support Officer - Youth & Community 

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