27 November 2023
From Monday 22nd – Friday 24th November, the #iwillmovement – powered by UK Youth and Volunteering Matters – marked its tenth anniversary during #iwill week.
#iwill week is our annual celebration of the social action work young people, Ambassadors, Champions, and partners, are leading up and down the UK. This year, we celebrated a decade of youth social action, and encouraged everyone to a be part of the movement that is shaping the next 10 years of youth-led change.
The theme of this year’s #iwill week was ‘What is the next big thing in youth social action?’. Events of the week were:
The premiere of ‘The Next Big Thing?’ – a film created by #iwill Ambassador Claire Madzura.
Removing barriers to youth social action – a conversation with #iwill Ambassadors.
Deaf Awareness Training – with #iwill Ambassador Ciara
20 Slides, 20 Seconds – with #iwill Ambassadors and friends
#iwill Movement 10th Anniversary Celebration event at The House of Commons
Louder Together: Sharing Learnings with Power of Youth Charter Signatories
We heard some incredible insights about the impact of youth social action, and what the next ten years of youth work should be like, from a range of our #iwill Ambassadors the length and breadth of the UK:
“When I first started, I wasn’t very confident in social action, but I think being part of the #iwill Movement and all the other things that I’ve done, its really helped me develop as a person.” – Hinal, 12, Leeds
“I used to be the girl in school that could go a whole week without speaking, and now I love public speaking, I love getting involved in projects, I constantly trying to find a new project to get involved in and I’ve also realised the value young people have to their society.” – Beth, 20, Birmingham
Molly, 15, Yorkshire
I think #iwill is so important when talking about belonging. There’s so many different people and we all advocate for different things, we all have a different background, we all have a different story, but we all come together with a shared love of social action and the want to drive change. I think that’s so special because even though we are all completely different, we all come back together as a community and we are all connected.
“Social action is important to me because it empowers me to have a voice to be heard and it also empowers me to speak up about issues that young people face” – Troy, 20, Wakefield
“For me social action is important because it is the vehicle that allowed me to see just how much I am capable of achieving as a young person.” – Saadia, 21 Swansea
“Social action is important to me because as a young person I find that often, our voices aren’t heard as much and they are very important for shaping our future because it us who are going to live in that future.” – Tamar, 16, Manchester
“I personally believe that youth social action has had such a positive impact on my life as I have met so many amazing people that I can now call friends and I have also gained more confidence in myself, using my voice to help others with social action” – Niamh, Glasgow
“I have realised that social action doesn’t have to be very hard to achieve. It doesn’t have to be something that’s massive. Your social action journey could start by raising money for charity with your friends.” – Hinal, 12, Leeds
“If you’re the only female or young person in the room, or if you ever feel like you don’t belong, make it your mission to represent the views of all young people who aren’t there to speak for themselves. Make it your mission to push for meaningful change. Make it your mission to change the system and not yourself. Find belonging in yourself and not in others.” – Lauren, Northern Ireland