The value of youth forums
The Kent Museums Youth Forum investigated whether young people across Kent were interested in the issues of sustainability and if so
whether museums could play a role in addressing these issues. The project also set out to demonstrate how Youth Forums can be developed and how they can help to shape and develop museum policies. Two types of youth forums were developed:
They looked at the following issues:
- A Formal Group (KMYF-FG) with ten 15 and 16 year olds from a single secondary school.
- An Informal Group (KMYF-IG) of 13 to 18 year olds living in and around Tunbridge Wells.
- Who should be the target for resources about sustainability?
- Where and how should museums target their resources about sustainability for young people?
They Forum felt that their parents’ generation had caused the problems that have resulted in Climate Change and the urgent need to address the issues of sustainability but it was going to be their responsibility to sort out the mess their parents had left behind. Therefore:
- Young people feel it is important that museums develop resources that are targeted at their generation.
- But museums should not forget that it is their parents who are the taxpayers and can therefore influence government policy; so therefore they should also be informed about climate change and the issues of how we will make the future sustainable.