On the 22nd November young people took over the child friendly Leeds communications office. This is our thoughts on child friendly Leeds.
What is child friendly Leeds?
Child friendly Leeds is about bringing young people (and all people) together to make a child-friendly city. To us, a child friendly city is a place where we feel valued, supported and encouraged. Children in Leeds would like to be listened to and be treated equally.
What does child friendly Leeds mean to us?
In our opinion, child friendly Leeds is about having a voice and making decisions in our city. This could be achieved by giving young people the opportunities to stand out and express our individuality. Also, we would be happier in our city if we were treated for who we are instead of being stereotyped; many people across Leeds think of teenagers are immature and are always causing trouble. We would like the public’s perception to change of young people because it would give us the confidence to be individual.
What still needs to happen?
For us, we don’t feel that there are enough activities for teenagers to do across the city. We feel that there should be more events for teenagers like music festivals. This could be done by having day long events and getting local bands to perform as they also get noticed. However, travelling to these events can be pretty hectic. To make traveling better to events, there should be bus services from different areas of Leeds taking you directly to the event at a cheap price.
We feel that young people are not comfortable and confident leaving school at the age of 16. To solve this, we feel that opportunities to gain life skills should be offered at a younger age. This could be done by having lessons in cooking, cleaning and more. This will also give us a better chance of survival in the real world. Also, this could benefit young people getting jobs and apprenticeships.
Across Leeds, young people are finding it hard to get places due to expensive travel and inconsistent travel. We find that when we want to catch a bus it isn’t on time. Also, when it is expensive, it can make us not want to use public transport and puts more pressure on parents and carers to take us places. Cheaper and more reliable travel would help to solve this.
We think that these things would make Leeds a more child friendly city.