Portsmouth conference to help young people become volunteers

Chief service officer Brian Bracher
Chief service officer Brian Bracher
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YOUNG people are being encouraged to visit a conference to get them into volunteering.

Organisations in Portsmouth are holding the free event, aimed at getting teenagers, aged 14 and over, involved in communities.

It would be a waste not to tap into the energy and passion that young people have.

Clare Martin

The Portsmouth Together Partnership, Pompey in the Community and Portsmouth Youth Voice Network have put together the conference, set to be held at Fratton Park.

Its aim is to give young people looking to volunteer the chance to network and meet groups who are happy to take them on.

Portsmouth High School student Sayeeda Nur, 17, who is chairman of Portsmouth Youth Voice, said: ‘This event is a great opportunity for young people to get involved in their community.

‘It’s great for the adults that work with us to find out how they can support us.

‘Young people all over the country are getting involved in social action and this is our chance to increase the number of opportunities in Portsmouth.’

Clare Martin, director of community projects at Pompey in the Community, said they were thrilled to be part of the event.

‘Pompey in the Community delivers the successful National Citizen Service programme locally,’ she said.

‘We’ve seen through this the enthusiasm young people have for getting involved and making a difference.

‘It would be a waste not to tap into the energy and passion that young people have.’

It will run from 9.30am to 4pm on February 16.

There will be workshops, presentations, discussions and a panel.

Speakers include Alison Jeffery, director of children’s services and education at Portsmouth City Council, Dr Rania Marandos, deputy chief executive of Step Up To Serve, and Portsmouth South MP Flick Drummond.

Brian Bracher, chief service officer for Portsmouth Together, said: ‘A recent report found that today’s young people are more engaged with volunteering and social action than any other generation before them.

‘But there aren’t currently the opportunities for them to get involved despite organisations across Portsmouth continually looking for new volunteers.

‘This conference looks at how we can bridge this gap.

‘How can we showcase the benefits that young volunteers can provide to organisations and overcome barriers that groups might have in taking on under 18s?’

Register at volunteer.portsmouth.gov.uk