Membership schemes for young people – youth engagement and participation

Membership schemes for young people – youth engagement and participation

By Harrow Arts Centre


Describes how Harrow Arts Centre turned their wish to engage with more young people into a programme of participatory projects led by 13-25 year olds. Following the centre's taking part in the A Night Less Ordinary event, one of these projects developed into The Guestlist, a membership scheme created by and for young audiences.

The initial ideas for the scheme came from our participation in A Night Less Ordinary from 2009 – 2011. The idea of a membership scheme for young people, called The Guestlist, was taken by the Participation Programmer and a group of young people who were taking part in projects at HAC, doing work experience with us or who were our young producers at the beginning of 2012. During the summer term and holidays in 2012, the group developed the scheme, created a brand and a launch event, and designed what the scheme would offer. We launched it for people to join on the 8th September 2012.

The scheme has been very fast growing; The Guestlist had over 300 members in its first three weeks! As a result of the project, HAC has:

  • A better offer for young people to get involved with us as an organisation and to help shape our programme
  • More opportunities for young people to take part in the arts
  • A broad base of young people we can communicate and consult with
Resource type: Case studies | Published: 2013