The Impact of Independent Advocacy

UCLAN and NCB's research sits alongside a
wider piece of work by The OCC into
advocacy for children and young people (above) 
PDC's Director Dan Moxon, has recently been part of a research team looking at the outcomes and impact of independent advocacy at The Centre for Children and Young People’s Participation at the University of Central Lancashire, in partnership with the National Children’s Bureau Research Centre. The research was undertaken following a commission from the Office of the Children's Commissioner as part of a wider project looking at the role and function of advocacy for children and young people. 

The research looked specifically at the impact and outcomes of independent advocacy for children and young people.  It found that outcomes were complex and varied, including increased confidence among young people and positive changes in the way services were provided.  The researchers suggested some ways in which these different outcomes could be captured.

Professor Nigel Thomas of the University of Central Lancashire, who led the research, commented:

“Our research showed the immense value of independent advocacy in producing a wide range of short and long term outcomes, empowering children and young people and leading to improvements in services. We hope that providers will be able to use our work to increase the quality and consistency of independent advocacy for all children, and to evaluate and demonstrate the outcomes and impact of their work.

View the report here

People Dialogue and Change and our work in the EU

The UK vote to leave Europe is a truly saddening political occurrence. At PDC we believe this decision only worsens the social, economic and political situation within the UK. We believe an integrated Europe is vital to the long term peace and security of the world. Sadly this vote is reflective of both the increasing move to the right within the UK, and a long term Euroscepticism cultivated in no small part by Rupert Murdoch's press empire. 

There are many divides in the UK as a result of this vote, but as an organisation focused on the voices of young people we are most concerned about them. Of those who voted, 73% of 18-24 year olds and 62% of 25-34 year olds chose to remaining in the EU. Overall the vote to leave was won by less than 3%. It is estimated that had 16 year olds been allowed to vote, the result would have been to remain.  Now more than ever, there is a need for UK-EU co-operation on youth and social programmes, for a generation who without doubt wish to remain part of the European project.  

People Dialogue and Change is a UK registered company, jointly run by Dan Moxon a British Citizen, and Guðbjörg Ágústsdóttir, an Icelandic Citizen.  Around 20% of PDC’s work is with organisations based in EU or EEA countries, in many cases directly on EU programmes.  We as individuals and as an organisation are deeply committed to the idea of an integrated Europe. It is this belief that led us to develop our work with youth organisations and social programmes across the continent, and will still drive us to do so in future. 

At this current time we would like to reassure all of our European partners there are no immediate changes to either the company's ability to trade and co-operate with our EU/EEA partners and we anticipate this will be the case until the UK formally leaves the EU in over two years time. Through the coming two years we will still aim to initiate new work with EU/EEA based organisations and clients. As the political picture unfolds, it will be our intention to give serious consideration to establishing a company base for PDC within the EEA/EU. 

Who do? You do? Remind me of the Oulu?

People Dialogue and Change has been providing consultancy support to the City of Oulu Kuntalaislähtöinen Community Led Local Development project in Finland.  Check out their fantastic "Kaos" branding in the picture below....(yes this really does translate as "30 hours of Chaos")

The Kaos programmes support groups of young people to identify social issues and then design and commission responses from local VCFS orgs.  

We supported the staff team to develop a theory of change for the project and to think about ways of evaluating the impact and outcomes they are having on city decision making, relationships with the VCFS and project participants. 

This was big step conceptually for the team who rose to the challenge of working with outcome measurements simultaneously in Finnish and English!  For the Finnish team, the concept of outcomes was a new one - it proved a useful way to help them think about the social change they were trying to create. Though as one team member joked to us, in what we were told was a compliment "there is no one who thinks like you in Finland".  (Click the link to read our thoughts!)

Conference: "On track - Different youth work approaches for different NEET situations"

What's your NEET, - Helsinki 2014 , facilitated by PDC
PDC are  pleased to continue supporting Salto Inclusion with their NEET strategy for European youth organisations. Join us at their conference in Bratislava this April:
“On Track” is a mini, 2,5 days, cross-sectoral conference addressing NEET issues and showcasing good practices, with the emphasize on cooperation between youth work and other sectors (formal education, employment, social & business sector...).
  • Date: 13-16 April 2016
  • Venue: Bratislava, Slovakia
  • Target group: 50 professionals with experience working on the issue of vulnerable young people in NEET situations (face-to-face workers as well as managers/decision makers). International experience is not a must. Youth workers, teachers, school support staff, social workers, researchers, local authorities/policy makers, employers, employment agencies… from Erasmus+: Youth in Action Programme countries.
  • The application deadline: 10th of January 2016.
  • More information & the application form is available here!
  • The seminar is co-organised by the E+: YiA NA Slovakia & SALTO Inclusion in cooperation with NA Turkey and NA BE FR.

Exploring the challenges in participatory research

Building from the Railway Children's award winning work using peer research to explore the journeys of children and young people who runaway, for which PDC supported the peer research elements,  we are pleased to announce the publication of "Be real with me". 

This document, written by Jane Thompson, Sarah Lanchin and Dan Moxon, is a reflection on some of the methodological challenges and tensions involved with working with young people as researchers.  

You can download the report here

or view the original research here