At the start of this year Children North East won a contract from Newcastle City Council to assist young people to set up an independent Youth Council for the city. This work is being managed by WEYES and in time perhaps the Youth Council will have a permanent home in the new WEYES building.
An incredible amount of work has gone on since February so that the first elections to the Youth Council could take place this week. The 'constituencies' had to be set up, candidates recruited, manifestos produced and disseminated, the election published and a voting method established. Young people could vote online or in their school using the actual ballot boxes which are used by adults in local and general elections.
The result of the election was announced at a reception in St. James's Park at lunch time today. The Sheriff of Newcastle congratulated all 50 candidates and gave awards to each and every one of them for putting themselves forward and for taking part. Then the result was announced. Over 8,000 young people had voted - an astonishing result in itself which gives real legitimacy to all the young people elected to 30 places on the Youth Council.
Congratulations to everyone who took part and in particular to all the project staff at WEYES who worked so hard on the election. You can see all the results on the Youth Council website: www.youthelection2010.children-ne.org.uk and here are all the candidates with the Sheriff: