OUT OF THE SHADOWS ONTO THE STREETS
Media stories this year have been about Gangs, Knife Crime, ‘Un’ Happiness, Self harm, Lack of Youth Provision, County Lines, Radicalised young Women, Poverty, and a Young Woman from Sweden – that has motivated her global peers to take to the streets to challenge governments across the world to do something about climate change. Young people’s response to these issues and ours as youth workers should be political, should be challenging the status quo, should be creative, reactive, proactive and unashamedly out there; on the streets, in conversations, on Instagram and opening up the dialogue in safe environments, in groups, individually, in youthie and at school.
Young people in my life time have been blamed for: violence, fashion, crime, music, escalation of drug culture, binge drinking, underage sex, too much use of social media, driving too young and too fast, gaming, hanging out, being lazy, being rude, staying out too late, getting into trouble, shirking responsibility, low aspirations – essentially for being young and going through adolescence.
The young people I am meeting on the streets are finding it hard to trust adults, are hanging out in large groups- just in case, are openly taking drugs, are trying to look older, are probably carrying, are mixing with people of various ages, are taking risks, are not wanting to do activities and are feeling pressured and picked on by adults.
But what is new about this?