Giving young people a voice

TEENAGERS in Billingham are being urged to sign up to a new project in order to make a difference to their community.

Billingham Town Council is to launch the new Youth Council for local young people to have a say on issues that affect them.

An open evening has been organised for Tuesday, February 26, when young people aged 11 to 18 can go along to find out more.

The town council says it wants to replicate the success of the independent charity British Youth Council, which campaigns on a host of issues, at a local level.

Project leaders said budding members just need to want to make a difference in their area to be part of it.

They want to hear what changes young people would like to see happen in Billingham.

And they are hoping that those who are ready and willing to make a difference for their future will come forward with their suggestions.

Dianne Rickaby, Billingham Town Council executive officer, said: “This is a fantastic opportunity for youngsters of our town to play an instrumental part in developing the future for Billingham.”

The Youth Council will be run by young people and provide their generation with a “bigger voice to make their views heard”.

Lauren Seaman, the town council’s business administration apprentice, added: “A British Youth Council exists and we thought it would be fantastic idea to have a local Youth Council for Billingham.

“Prospective members just need to have aspirations for their local town and want to make a difference to the town they live in.

“We believe young people are the future of our communities and would encourage anybody to become a member of the Youth Council.

“They will have a chance to discuss their views and will be able to contribute to improving the lives of other young people within the local community.”

The open evening will be held at Billingham Community Centre, The Causeway, Billingham from 5pm-8pm.

More information is available by contacting, Lauren Seaman at Billingham Town on the following: (01642) 551171, email, or twitter @BillinghamTC.