Islay & Jura is one of 6 communities in Scotland participating in the Fourteen programme. A Panel of local people has been established to oversee the distribution of the Fourteen resource budget, informed by ideas and aspirations of community groups and local people on Islay & Jura. The programme is focussed around 4 key outcomes: improving individual well-being; improving perceptions towards disability and impairment; overcoming isolation; connecting people within communities.

The local Fourteen panel wanted to engage more young people in making decisions about how the resource budget should be spent, including making their own applications to the fund. Connections were identified with the youth-led process Space Unlimited specialises in, and an approach was agreed.

Space Unlimited engaged with 95 young people from the local school and 2 local youth workers.  A leadership group of 15 young people were recruited to lead the enquiry process.

We then ran a 3 day enquiry to explore:

“How can we help to build a community that better supports the needs and aspirations of all young people?”

As a part of the process the young people, with support from Space Unlimited:

  • Designed a community dialogue event
  • Are working alongside local youth organisations and other service providers to develop their ideas for:
  1. A bakery and possible youth café.
  2. Play parks around the islands.
  3. A gaming centre, cyber café.
  4. Youth led research around reducing isolation.
  5. Improved transport.

The young people involved in phase 1 of the project evaluated their experience so far. 

All of the young people said the work will help improve communication and 90% said that the work will help social isolation, improve the community for adults and young people, and it will make decision-making on the island more inclusive.

Update

Phase 2 of this exciting project is ongoing on Islay & Jura.  Space Unlimited are continuing to support local youth workers, young people and members of the panel as they attempt to put these ideas into practice, or to secure the funding and support to make them a reality. Some of the young people have already been doing additional research, contributing to other developmental activity around their ideas and a few have tried out baking and selling goods for more experience...more updates to come as the year progresses.