Practitioner Panel launches aka. Avengers Assemble
A story years in the making. An enduring unresolved challenge. A new hope arising. Yet, to realise its potential, a team needs to be assembled. A mix of experience, skills, ingenuity and insight; each member with their own unique backstory. Together they will help forge a new way forward.
The premise of the latest Marvel blockbuster or a strained metaphor to mark the launch of our new Practitioner Panel?
An enduring unresolved challenge
Since its foundation in 2014, the Centre has been working with partners across the UK youth sector to develop shared approaches to learning, evaluation and continuous improvement. Our vision has always been grounded in a simple reality: young people deserve quality provision that enables them to flourish. Our Outcomes Framework 2.0 details how we understand the ways quality youth provision can lead to and support social and emotional development for young people. To understand whether provision is achieving these aims (and to inform improvements along the way) requires, in part, tools that help practitioners and organisations to capture what changes as a result of our journey with young people.
Yet, feedback from youth work practitioners in our regional networks made it clear they didn’t feel these tools exist: accessible, useful and credible resources to 'measure the magic' of youth work, support continuous improvement, demonstrate what changes it contributes to over time, and strengthen our collective voice about the role and value of informal and non-formal youth provision.
A new hope arising
And we have been listening. Over the past year, the Centre has been developing an evidence-informed, comprehensive approach to measuring youth provision quality and impact. We have been drawing on US colleagues’ tried, tested and validated methods for measuring social and emotional development. We are hopeful that we developed four key measures adapted to the British context that offers youth organisations the opportunity to get a comprehensive and collective picture of their provision's quality and impact.
Yet, to realise its potential, a team needs to be assembled
To ensure that the measurement tools are fit for purpose, we have launched a Practitioner Panel, drawing together 18 youth work practitioners to bring expertise and experience to inform the suite of measurement tools and new data-gathering platforms.
Panel members have made a one-year commitment to work with the Centre to review and pilot the measures, and share their feedback. They will gain early access to the measurement tools and advise us on how they can be reshaped for broader implementation, and the support youth organisations will need to use the tools well. To ensure that we hear from a broad range of providers, the Centre is contributing to the costs of preparing for and attending meetings.
A need for a mix of experience, skills, ingenuity and insight; each member with their own unique backstory
We have purposefully drawn together practitioners working in a wide variety of organisations and who work with young people in a range of contexts and types of provision: from statutory to the voluntary sector; centre-based to detached; project-based to open access.
List of members of the Panel are listed below. Ideas for superhero names welcome…
Together they will help forge a new way forward
The first meeting focused on building an understanding of the background to the measurement tools and introducing them in more detail. Members of the Panel are now reviewing the tools and draft guidance on how to roll them out in their provision and then start to pilot the measures in their work with young people over the summer.
So, what next? (aka the credit scene)
Traditionally every Marvel movie ends with a trailer for the next step in the credits. Something to tease the audience and urge them to stay with the story.
For this movie opener we invite you to:
- Read the Outcomes Framework 2.0: to help you think about planning, designing, delivering, and evaluating your provision for young people
- Get involved: You can request the measurement tools in beta to help us with their development: we’d like to hear from others who’d like to test/pilot them in their settings, or provide us with detailed feedback to help implementation. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Say Hello: Message us on social media with details of what measurement tools you use in your work and why you use them. You can follow us on Twitter or message us on LinkedIn. You can even let us know your favourite Marvel character.
Tom Burke is Executive Director at the Centre for Youth Impact on a fixed-term contract to Summer 2021. His favourite Marvel characters are Jessica Jones and the Black Widow.
Practitioner Panel members (April 2021)
- Clare Corran, Positive Futures
- David Sampher, Lincolnshire County Council
- Dominic Hinshelwood, Laburnum Boat Club
- Efe Ezekiel, U Shine I Shine
- Elaha Walizadeh, Refuge
- Helena Williams, Shropshire County Council
- Jaffer Hussain, Lancashire BME Network
- Kevin Franks, Youth Focus: North East
- Kim Jones, Portishead Youth Centre
- Laura Colebrooke, Youth Moves
- Laura Griffin, Coventry & Warwickshire Mind
- Ricky Murray, Children N.E.
- Siobhan Connolly, Curley,Career Connect
- Tim Aldcroft, London Borough of Newham
- Deborah Carter, The Lighthouse Attleborough
- Denise Clifford, Youth Moves
- Russell Oxley, The Brunswick Centre
- Sean Longhurst, British Youth Council
- Michalis Migos, Youth First