Second time lucky hope Young Inspectors

Published Friday, 27th October 2017
Second time lucky hope young inspectors.
Left to right: Ashlea Harvey Young Inspector Co-Ordinator, Jasmine Swallow, Performance Assurance Manager – Participation and Engagement and Young Inspector Laura Crerar

A team of young people who inspect services delivered to children and young people in Rotherham are hoping it will be second time lucky for them at a prestigious award ceremony next month.

Rotherham Council’s Young Inspectors, who were set up just over two years ago to give recommendations to services about how they can better serve children and young people, were pipped at the post after being put forward for a national award last year.

Now they have been nominated for a second year running; all are keeping their fingers crossed that they will walk off with the top prize this time.

The group, who represent volunteers aged 11-24 from across the borough, have been short listed for the ‘Youth Volunteering and Social Action’ award in the national Children and Young People Now awards.

They just missed out on the top spot last year, and were instead presented with a high commendation for their impressive progress since their inception.

Young Inspector Co-ordinator Ashlea Harvey said: “To get the recognition we did last year was just amazing.

“If we can win this time round we will be so happy. We want everyone to know about what we do and being recognised nationally like this might make other young people want to join the team.

“In the two and a half years we have been operating we have managed to secure a number of changes to the way services are delivered for children, young people and their families. We have also identified lots of positive practice and this makes us proud and want to continue doing what we do. An award would just be the icing on the cake.”

The ‘Young Inspectors’ were set up in May 2015 with the aim of making sure Children and Young People’s Services are meeting quality standards, and that the voices of children and young people, including the most vulnerable, are listened to and acted upon.

Cllr Gordon Watson, Rotherham Council’s Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Children and Young People’s Services, said: “Our Young Inspectors are an inspiration to us all and I really hope it is second time lucky for them and they get the first prize which they truly deserve.

“It is essential that we listen to and act on the voices of young people about services we are designing for them, especially if we want these services to succeed. Any service which we commission as a Council, or is run by our partners, and is aimed at children, young people and their families, should be reviewed by our Young Inspectors.”

Representatives of the Young Inspector’s team (Ashlea Harvey, Jasmine Swallow and Laura Crerar - pictured) attended the ceremony at Grange Tower Bridge Hotel in London last year. This year’s event will be held on November 22 at London’s Lancaster Hotel.

Recruitment for the Young Inspectors is ongoing, with the team looking for new volunteers to join between aged 11 and 24. Anyone interested in joining should contact Young Inspectors Co-ordinator Ashlea Harvey:

Email Ashlea Harvey

Call Ashlea Harvey on 01709 823917

Call Ashlea Harvey on 07798 581232