Sutton Youth Parliament Elections: Update from Erin

During the run up to the Sutton Youth Parliament MYP elections for 2015, we will be posting a variety of updates from our candidates. Today’s update comes from Erin Horsley. Previous updates have come from FaridaGranthick, Ethan and Oliwia.

My name is Erin Horsley and I am fourteen years old. Hopefully by now you will have seen my video explaining my three pledges. I’m not very good at campaigning, however I am trying my best. I have created a Facebook page called ‘Erin Horsley for UK Youth Parliament‘ and of course my twitter account @VoteErinHorsley. I will attempt to update those pages and I will be doing some special events for my followers. I think that you should #VoteErin because I am different. I believe that I will be the best to represent our wonderful borough because I am dedicated towards making a better life for young people. After all, we are the future.

I don’t see myself as extremely smart or arty or talented in most ways. However, I do know that I am ambitious. Most people told me that I wouldn’t be able to compete to be the next Youth Parliament member because I wasn’t good enough. I have been trying my hardest to make sure that I have a chance at winning this election. I will make sure that how I look, how I dress, how I sound and my age doesn’t affect me in any way. I want you to see me or my posters and remember my pledges. So here they are.

My pledges focus on the needs of young people, such as protection from crime, an understanding from others and enough money to get by. I feel that young people are seen as lazy and that we don’t do anything productive but shoplift etc. However, I know that there are young people out there showing how great being our age is, but they aren’t heard. That is why my first pledge is to get the Guardian to dedicate a page each month to young people. The Sutton Guardian only ever really talks about what’s wrong with the community. Well I believe that we need to show all that is right with our community. With a voice behind us, we can show everyone that being a teenager doesn’t mean being a nuisance or awkward, it means being great.

My second pledge is to try to influence the local council to do more about crime that affects young people. Have you ever felt unsafe when walking home from school? Ever watch your back constantly as it gets darker in the evenings? Well I know I do. I also know that there are young people out there being abused. These people find it particularly difficult in life to do well in school if they aren’t safe, and that is why it is my second pledge.

My final pledge is to raise the minimum wage for 16-17 year olds.  It is only £3.72 an hour. Life is stressful enough for a teenager without adding on money troubles as well. I am preparing for that day when I all of a sudden have university fees, bills to pay and rent as well. I have it easier than most with what I have. However, my final pledge is aimed at the young person who has aspirations. They want to go somewhere great in life. However, if they are falling behind at school because they have to have two jobs to pay for their expenses or university fees, they won’t be able to achieve the high levels that they need.

Please remember to like my Facebook page ‘Erin Horsley for UK Youth Parliament‘ and follow my twitter @VoteErinHorsley.

If you want a kind but strong candidate to win, vote Erin Horsley in the upcoming elections! Vote for Erin for a better Sutton, Vote Erin for a better future.

Erin is running for MYP for Sutton alongside seven other candidates. You can find out more about them by visiting this page.

The elections will take place on Thursday 29th January 2015 in selected Sutton secondary schools.

What do you think about Erin’s pledges? Have you watched the video showing the other candidates? Please leave any comments in the box below.

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Sutton Youth Parliament Elections: Update from Farida

During the run up to the Sutton Youth Parliament MYP elections for 2015, we will be posting a variety of updates from our candidates. Today’s update comes from Farida Augustine. Previous updates have come from Granthick, Ethan and Oliwia.

My name is Farida and I would love the opportunity to be elected as your next member of youth parliament for Sutton. As discussed in my election video there are three things I want to improve and change in Sutton if elected:

  1. First I want to improve something I like to call the 3 A’s of mental health: the accessibility, availability and awareness of mental health and mental health services among young people. This is something that I am particularly passionate about, because society in general has a particularly fragmented view on mental health and the way in which it affects young people. There is also a huge amount of negative stigma surrounding mental as a whole, preventing the majority of people from seeking the help that they so crucially need.Mental health disorders are also just not viewed as important as physical illnesses, and I adamantly believe that there needs to a huge paradigm shift in the way we regard mental health. Especially, considering that over the last 10 years there has been a 68% increase in number of young people admitted into hospital for self-harm.  To put it quite frankly, if we don’t do anything now, the numbers can only go up.

    I also believe that mental health services in Sutton that  cater especially for young people are too few, too strained and too poor, causing immense amounts of unnecessary suffering among young people. In order to combat this, I propose that as a borough, we embed mental health services at the core of Sutton. This can be done by creating designated places that provide a safe, relaxed and young people friendly environment for us to discuss our personal issues. I aim to do this by campaigning to set up one- stop shops that offer confidential services for youths. These places would be set up around Sutton, particularly on the high street where young people can simply walk in without appointment and get immediate help (without having to wait for long periods of time).

    You may be thinking that this idea is not achievable, however in Streatham there is an amazing example of an award winning youth health centre which provides drop in counselling services provided by specialist doctors, youth workers and counsellors for young people called The Well Centre.  If elected I will make sure that we can learn from Streatham in respects to what there are doing right to provide young people with the best possible care.

    Now that I have proven to you that my vision to improve the accessibility and availability of mental health services in Sutton is entirely possible and practical give me the opportunity to turn my vision into a reality by voting for me as Suttons next MYP.

    Along with improving the accessibility and availability of mental health services, I also want to bring more awareness of mental health issues to eradicate the negative stigma and make it less of a taboo so that ultimately, they can be regarded as highly as physical illnesses. Because at the end of the day, around one in 10 children and young people aged five to 16 are currently suffering from a diagnosable mental health problem – on average that’s around three children in every classroom.  We can solve this problem by educating young people about mental health in all schools (from primary to secondary) which in my opinion are the best places to do so, because on average young people spend 40 hours a week at school and if it is mandatory for schools to teach physical education, why should mental health be neglected?

  1. Secondly I want to improve the communication between the young people of Sutton and the council, so that we can have more of a say about what goes on in Sutton especially in our parks and local areas, because I believe that all young people deserve the basic human right to be given the chance to have their voices heard, and if elected to become Suttons next MYP that is exactly what I want to do. I want to enable the young people of Sutton to be given not only the right, but also the opportunity to have their voice heard by the people with all the people with the power in the council. I want to do this by setting up projects and discussions between young people and the council which aim to listen to your views with regards to improving the local area to cater for young people specifically.

    In fact I have begun talks with the council, who haven already begun plans to improve Beddington park and if elected I promise to make sure that you get what you want.

Whether it may be:

  • skating ramps
  • Better playground facilities
  • Adventure play sets aimed at teenagers rather than just young children
  • Canoeing lessons
  • Artistic sculptures / painting
  • Board games
  1. Lastly, I want to make Sutton High Street, the next Oxford Street. By this, I mean that I want to make Sutton High Street a safer, cleaner and more enjoyable place for you to do your shopping. This is because for the most of us, Sutton is our primary location for our weekly shopping– so why not make it the best?

I propose to do this by:

  • Scheduling regular litter pickups and increasing the number of bins available.
  • Introducing a wider range of shops that YOU want, whether it may be H&M, Jack Wills or a Krispy Kreme.
  • Attracting more businesses such as local cafes and bakeries to support local businesses and to give you more options if you a wider variety of places to eat.
  • Setting up appealing signposted walking routes to and from the high street as well as maps to make it easier to locate where certain shops are and to find your way around Sutton.
  • Cooperating with local cafes to set up a youth club where young people from Sutton schools can meet up and socialise.
  • Investing in more art work and sculptures to improve the appearance of the high street

I know that this may sound like a tall order, however if I get elected I will make it my mission to make Sutton High street a better place, not only for your enjoyment but also to attract a larger amount of people which will in the long run put more money into the economy – which can only be good thing.

Not only will I work adamantly towards achieving the three goals I spoke about in my election video and in this article, I will also champion the views of all the young people in Sutton, so that we can all make Sutton a better place together. Not only for this generation but also for the generation of young people to come, so if you want Sutton to be a better place and want a candidate to listen to what you want- Vote for Farida Augustine on January 29th2014.

Farida is running for MYP for Sutton alongside seven other candidates. You can find out more about them by visiting this page.

The elections will take place on Thursday 29th January 2015 in selected Sutton secondary schools.

What do you think about Farida’s pledges? Have you watched the video showing the other candidates? Please leave any comments in the box below.

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Sutton Youth Parliament Elections: Update from Granthick

Our latest MYP candidate comes from Granthick Barua. (Previous updates have come from Oliwia and Ethan.)

Hi everyone! My name is Granthick (ignore the spelling mistake in the video), I’m 14 and I’m just gonna talk about my pledges and other stuff plus why you should vote for me!

Well if you have looked at my video (I know I look horrible and my sense of fashion went out of the window that day…) then you know briefly about my pledges. So my first pledge is about increasing job opportunities and work experience placements. If you’re looking for one right now, then you know how hard it is especially when you have no contacts to start with and adults don’t trust you yet. My solution is to create a virtual platform where you can find such jobs when the need arises but this has already been done before. What I plan on doing is getting the schools involved with them promoting this platform so that every school gets their pupils involved.

Secondly, it is a topic that not many people talk about though I believe it to be the most important, raising mental health awareness. Within schools, this subject becomes a taboo kind of subject which is completely wrong! Mental health issues affect one in every four people and most people do not see the consequences of it. A mental issue can range from simple ocd to serious depression but all these start from a young age and not knowing about it makes it more likely that you might affect them. I want to focus on depression mainly as it is a factor that a lot of people have these days and my friend inspired me to change how we treat this issue. I propose introducing this subject within the national curriculum and implanting lessons on it through PSHE or class discussions.

My final pledge is to increase extra curricular activities because everyone gets bored at school, I’m sorry but no matter who you are, you will at a time find yourself admitting that school is a pain. I think the best way to deal with this is by just having extra stuff to do when at school like more sports or whatever you think is needed. Personally, I want to improve computer science within the borough because I believe that is a very important skill.

So I’ve reached the end of my things to say so now it’s your turn! This is your community and I’m just a voice to say what you tell me! I’m not anyone special or unique and my pledges are what I want to do but if we want Sutton to be the best then it’s about what you want to happen! Find me on fb and tell me what you want and vote for me to see your changes happen!! I am also building a website at the moment (and if my school work doesn’t kill me) I will hopefully finish it before this year! So I’ll give that link when it’s done plus let’s make Sutton awesome!!! Vote for me for an awesome change!!!

Granthick is running for MYP for Sutton alongside seven other candidates. You can find out more about them by visiting this page.

The elections will take place on Thursday 29th January 2015 in selected Sutton secondary schools.

What do you think about Granthick’s pledges? Have you watched the video showing the other candidates? Please leave any comments in the box below.

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Sutton Youth Parliament Elections: Update from Ethan

On Monday we shared an update from Oliwia, one of our Sutton Member of Youth Parliament candidates. Today we have an update from another candidate, Ethan Smith:

Hello, I’m Ethan and I’m 16 years old. I’m going to tell you why YOU should vote for me in the next UK Youth Parliament election which is being held in January 2015. That’s not far away and I need YOU to support me in my campaign to get the seat in the Youth Parliament.

One major problem that happens in Sutton is that young people aren’t listened to and this has to be acknowledged. To solve this issue I want to create open house days where councillors will go into schools to get YOUR views on what YOU think should be happening in YOUR community. Young people are the most important people on the planet as we are the next generation to step into our new world.

Another issue is event awareness. Young people are not alerted of the events that happen around them, especially looked after young people and care leavers. As a looked after young person myself I really understand the importance of getting involved in the community that surrounds us. I want to make sure you are all invited to these events. There’s no pressure, you don’t have to take part in the activities but to be aware of them is something YOU deserve. I even want young people from other boroughs and areas to be begging to come to our amazing events that we can create together!

Lastly, I will campaign to create a more efficient council and community by merging mentoring with advocacy. This means that a mentor who some young people see on a regular basis can take on the same role as an advocate, so you will be able to invite them to meetings with social workers and other professionals. This makes YOUR views stronger and more likely to take effect. Also, it reduces the number of people getting involved in YOUR life and will give you one person that you can open up to, not several dozen.

I hope this statement gives you an insight into how much I want to improve Sutton’s community, for YOU and other young people in OUR area.

Remember, Vote E Vote Me

Ethan Smith

Ethan is running for MYP for Sutton alongside seven other candidates. You can find out more about them by visiting this page.

The elections will take place on Thursday 29th January 2015 in selected Sutton secondary schools.

What do you think about Ethan’s pledges? Have you watched the video showing the other candidates? Please leave any comments in the box below.

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Youth Summit 2015

Earlier this year we held a Youth Summit where young people were able to talk to Sutton Council and various key partners and tell them how they could involve young people in the decision making process. Attendees came from St Philomena’s, Limes College, Nonsuch High School, Stanley Park High, Cheam High and Sutton Grammar School and they were able to listen to and participate in a variety of talks, workshops and discussion panels.

Get involved…

We are currently in the process of organising next year’s Youth Summit which is due to take place in March. If you are aged 13-19 and would like to be involved please contact Lee at lee.ocsko@sutton.gov.uk. You can also tweet us at @SuttonYouth using the #SuttonYSummit hashtag.

A video of the first Youth Summit can be seen below:

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