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5 October, 2005

Young people are the impetus to make change: Values, rights and responsibilities go local

Young people from across the UK converged on the Museum of London on 4 October 2005 with a powerful challenge to set values, human rights and responsibilities at the heart of the social, political and educational agenda. They supported their case, and represented their country, with examples of innovative projects from their schools, colleges, and youth organisations. The young presenters were joined on the platform by Harriet Harman QC, Minister for Human Rights at the Department for Constitutional Affairs.

“It is not often young men of this age and from marginalised communities are rewarded for work in this field.” This was the verdict of one youth worker from Northern Ireland about his youth organisation’s participation in the impetus awards programme.

‘We are really impressed by the energy, creativity and commitment of the young impetus award participants’, commented Adam Short, impetus England Coordinator. ‘They have been tackling tough and practical issues. Some have addressed community relations in their schools and communities. For example, one project team questioned the arms traders on their school perimeter and others have tackled teenage and adult violence.

Sheila Bloom, chief executive of the Institute for Global Ethics UK Trust, said of this year’s projects: “Creative and innovative responses to contemporary, challenging and contested issues in our society lie at the heart of the impetus programme. Never has the vision of impetus seemed more relevant or important to our world than it does today.”

impetus, established in 2002 as a unique partnership awards programme in the UK, was itself short listed for the Human Rights Award 2004 by Liberty, JUSTICE and the Law Society, “for innovative and crucial work bringing human rights to young people across the UK, educating and inspiring them to promote values of dignity, equality and fairness” and “for imaginative work uniting young people from diverse backgrounds, and making a significant contribution to developing a culture of respect for human rights.”

Lord Phillips of Sudbury, Chair of the impetus National Advisory Panel believes, “the importance of programmes like this in an age of unparalleled disconnectedness, ideological tensions and institutional mistrust cannot be exaggerated. I hope that more and more participants and partners will join impetus during 2005/06”.

Further information

To find out more please email:

Notes for editors:

1) impetus is a UK programme led by the Institute for Global Ethics UK Trust, and developed in association with the Citizenship Foundation, CSV and other partners.

2) impetus is funded by the Department for Constitutional Affairs, Department for Education and Skills, Welsh Assembly Government and the Gordon Cook Foundation.

3) Over the 2004/05 impetus year around 100 impetus projects have involved over 1000 young people.

4) An awards certificate is given to every submission that demonstrates the four impetus criteria which are: ;

1)……. Exploration of shared rights and responsibilities

2) …….Creative application of shared values

3) …….Whole school/organisation involvement

4) …….Community engagement

5) Media opportunities exist for filming, interviewing and photos at the following times. Please contact to arrange a time or confirm your attendance at the event.

• Monday 3 October – 4-9pm.

London Eye and the Imperial Hotel, Russell Square.

• Tuesday 4 October – 9am – 12pm.

London Museum - Rehearsal period for young people

• Tuesday 4 October – 1.00-3.30pm

London Museum - Annual Showcase event with Harriet Harman QC MP, Rabinder Singh QC, and Jan Newton, Advisor on Citizenship at the Department for Education and Skills.

6) Projects involved in this year’s showcase include (Please see attached programme for project descriptions)

Scotland England Wales Northern Ireland

Killearn Primary School, Stirling Polesworth School, Tamworth Young People working with Anglesey County Council Stranmillis Primary School, Belfast

St Michael’s Catholic High School, Watford Bedwas High School, Caerphilly Children’s Express Belfast Bureau

Royal Docklands School, London Ysgol Y Faenol, Denbighshire Oakwood Integrated College, Derry/Londonderry

St Hild’s College CE (Aided) Primary School, County Durham

Mayfield Special School, Birmingham

King James I Community College, Bishop Auckland

About the Institute for Global Ethics UK Trust

Our mission is to promote ethical behaviour in individuals, institutions and nations through research, public discourse and practical action.

The Institute for Global Ethics UK Trust (IGE UK), acts as a catalyst – initiating programmes to elevate public discussion about the individual rights and responsibilities of citizens, giving high priority to the practice of shared values, not just to the theoretical agreement of what those values are. The impetus partnership awards programme is our flagship project for working with young people and their communities to promote shared values in action.



About the Citizenship Foundation

The Citizenship Foundation is an independent charity (no. 801360) which aims to empower individuals to engage in the wider community through education about the law, democracy and society. Founded in 1989, we focus particularly on developing young people’s citizenship skills, knowledge and understanding. www.citizenshipfoundation.org.uk

Our work includes:

• A comprehensive range of citizenship resources for a wide audience from teachers to young offenders

• Nationwide and international training programmes

• National active learning projects for secondary schools

• Community projects to develop citizenship education as a collective responsibility

• Research to advance our understanding of best practice in citizenship education.

About CSV

CSV involves people in high quality volunteering and training opportunities that tackle real need and enrich lives. CSV is a charity no: 291222 and a registered company no: 1435877


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