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Children and young people

Play your part in running children’s services in Lambeth

Lambeth Council has become the first authority in the country to enable children and young people to play a part in the running of youth centres, adventure playgrounds, and children’s centres.

We are encouraging community spirited young people aged between 11-19 to join our new ‘Young Lambeth Cooperative’ which will oversee youth and play services. We want as many young people as possible to help us do this as well as parents, residents, local groups and organisations.

The Young Lambeth Cooperative is the next step in our vision for enabling local communities to own, shape, and deliver services in partnership with the council. Its main aim is to provide young people with a voice in running the very services they use as well as enabling them to take control over how funding is allocated.

During the past 12 months we have been working with a range of residents, service users, and partners, to develop a cooperative approach to running services.

Children’s services are among the first to become early adopters of our innovative cooperative council model. They include five council managed youth centres, seven adventure playgrounds, and 13 Stay and Play One O’Clock Clubs. Community support for the council’s cooperative model is rapidly growing with more than 300 residents from across the borough having expressed an interest in playing a part in shaping children’s services within their neighbourhoods.

Lambeth Council Cabinet Member for Children and Young People’s Service, Cllr Pete Robbins, said: “The Young Lambeth Cooperative is a hugely exciting step in our journey to becoming a cooperative council – putting the resources of the council under the control of young people and the local community. Young people and local communities have consistently told us they want more say over the positive activities they can access – the Young Lambeth cooperative gives them that power, but also helps protect our youth centres, adventure playgrounds, and other vital services from government cuts.”

“Young Lambeth Cooperative membership will be open to any Lambeth resident who is interested in youth and play, and the more people who play a part the stronger it will be. This is the most radical change to providing children’s services ever attempted, and highlights the ambition and aspiration of the cooperative council.”

Communities will be encouraged to personalise and shape services to meet local needs and in time manage their own budgets and raise funds as the council reduces its involvement. Cooperative services could potentially expand as the council looks into creating ‘community hubs’ that could provide new spaces from which community groups, social enterprises, and other grass roots projects can operate. In the long-term the cooperative model will protect services from closure as the council continues to find new ways of working within a tough budgetary climate.

To register your interest visit
http://www.lambeth.gov.uk/surveys/CYPS/younglambethcoop/youngcoop.htm or email cooperativecouncil@lambeth.gov,.uk for more information visit http://www.lambeth.gov.uk/coooperativecouncil

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