North Lanarkshire Council, Youth Work Team
Young People with an interest in representing youth voices, community based storytelling and reportage aged 12-26. The young people involved were aged 12-19.
During the European Championship Sporting event 2018, hosted in Strathclyde Country Park, North Lanarkshire, we formed the NL Young Reporters team. We took on the task of covering all the daily action from the “Go Live in the Park” zone. The objective was to enable young people to tell the story of this high profile international event via community based digital journalism.
Secondly, we aimed to equip participants with new and developed digital skills by providing training and the opportunity to be supported on-site by a professional film-maker, which equipped them with skills for vlogging, blogging, photography, using social media, film-making, interviewing and editing.
A similar pilot project ran during the previous year, linked to the British Transplant Games and was so successful that we were asked by the organisers of this event to get involved again. This activity was also planned as a showcase event during Scotland’s National Year of Young People.
The young people are free to decide which stories they want to seek out and report on, and have full control of the creative process from then on, with support where required. This is fast community based journalism: stories are captured, edited and posted live within a matter of hours, so young people get used to working to tight deadlines and thinking on their feet.
We used ipads, video cameras, mics, and mobile phones. We have two youth workers supporting the project and a freelance film-maker who provided technical expertise and support. Wi-Fi was not always available, so we tethered to mobile phones when required.
The young people really enjoyed the experience, and the transformation in their skills and confidence by the end of the project was amazing to see. They created some fantastic digital content about the games and the festival site and have since reported their success to Elected Members (politicians) and Senior Officials, receiving much praise for their efforts and contribution made to the success of the event overall.
We held a showcase event where we pulled all the work together and had inputs from some of the young people involved, and we gathered their feedback. We also presented our work to officials and politicians. We gathered Twitter statistics as an indication of the reach and engagement of the project.
It has highlighted the ability of youth workers to engage young people in a new way, and has given another opportunity for young people’s voices to be heard. This model could be applied to any event or issue, so it is an engaging and enjoyable way to capture what matters to young people, and ‘adults’ were willing to listen and take notice. We are all much more confident in employing digital skills to record and showcase our work, which allows us to reach a wider audience.
Blog Site: https://nlyoungreporters.wordpress.com