Young people will be seen and heard at the annual Young Wales Conference
Young people from across Wales will meet with Ministers from across Welsh Government today to have their voices heard on Universal Children’s Day.
Designed and organised by the members of the Young Wales Project Board, the annual Young Wales Conference is a chance for young people to speak directly to Ministers about issues that matter to them.
Climate change, mental health and well-being and equality and diversity will be among the topics being discussed and workshopped, with 15-20 young people from a diverse range of backgrounds and experiences from across Wales joining each of the sessions.
The Welsh Government adopted the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC) in 2004. As part of this commitment to promoting children’s rights Welsh Government pledged to take into account the views of young people when making policy and decisions that affect them.
Ministers attending include First Minister, Mark Drakeford, Deputy Minister for Social Services, Julie Morgan, the Minister for Climate Change, Julie James, the Deputy Minister for Mental Health and Well-being, Lynne Neagle and Jane Hutt, Minister for Social Justice.
Julie Morgan said: “We have continually put children and young people at the heart of our policy making and have led the way on Children’s Rights. Conferences like the one today demonstrates our clear commitment to ensuring their voices are heard at the heart of government.
“By hearing first-hand, the concerns and issues that affect children we can better make decisions which benefit future generations. I look forward to working with young people on issues which matter to them and working across government to embed these views into policy.”
First Minister of Wales Mark Drakeford said: “It is vitally important for us to listen to the views of children and young people. That’s why I am looking forward so much to these discussion sessions.
“Wales’ youth have a strong role in shaping our policies and ideas, as we work to deliver a fairer, greener, ever more successful Wales.”
Nirusgab Sudarsan from SEF-Cymru, a charity which aims to address under-achievement of students in Cardiff, seeks to promote social inclusion and remove barriers to lifelong learning and skills development, will also be joining the conference.
He said: “The Young Wales conference allows a diverse range of young people to talk to Ministers about solving some of the biggest issues. Climate change, equality, diversity and inclusion and mental health and wellbeing are priorities for young people, and we have the ideas that will make a positive difference to our lives.”
Another attendee, Sienna Pincott said: “It’s an exciting conference. I and other young people are looking forward to it and especially looking forward to talking with Ministers on world children’s day. I want to know what’s being done about global warming and what Ministers are doing about it. More young people should know about climate change and play a role in the decision making.”
Support our Nation today
For the price of a cup of coffee a month you can help us create an independent, not-for-profit, national news service for the people of Wales, by the people of Wales.