Embedding youth voice into evaluation

Jun 1, 2021

Centering and amplifying young people’s voices is a vital part of how we work at Youth Futures Foundation. It’s important that young people have their say in the shaping of policies or practices that affect them. 

We’re fortunate to work with a number of brilliant young people whose input is hugely influential in our work, particularly through the evaluation of our Inspiring Futures grant programme.

For the past few months, our Evidence and Evaluation Manager, Dr Shivonne M. Gates, has been working closely with the Inspiring Futures Youth Reference Group.  Made up of bright young people, the perspectives of group members are informing and shaping the evaluation of our multi-million pound grant programme.

Through a partnership with BBC Children in Need, Inspiring Futures provides financial support to organisations supporting young people from marginalised backgrounds affected by the Covid-19 pandemic.  To understand the difference that the grants are making, we commissioned research from Cordis Bright to evaluate the programme. 

We want this process to be as accessible and engaging as possible and offer a unique learning experience to our advisory group of young people.  Throughout this project, the Youth Reference Group has developed and shaped the evaluation approach, devising research questions and critiquing methodological approaches.

Dr Shivonne M. Gates (pictured) said:   

“I am really proud of the work that the Youth Reference Group has done so far, supported by our fantastic evaluator Cordis Bright. Engaging young people in evaluations in a meaningful way is rare, so I’m really excited to see what the group will do over the next year or so.” 

Keep a look-out for more updates on our Inspiring Futures evaluation journey. 

Find out how Inspiring Futures is helping young asylum seekers in Hull find work in our latest blog with Toranj Tuition here.