Blog PostCo-designPartnership Year 2018-2019

A&D Blogs: Ross Cowan

My name is Ross Cowan I am 21 years old from Cumbernauld North Lanarkshire. I have been involved in many different projects with Young Scot.

I have been a volunteer with young scot for over 5 years during this time I have accrued over 2800 volunteering hours. the role which I have played in these projects is part of the organisation, planning and delivering, so basically involved in all parts of the group from the start to the end.

With the groups at Young Scot we have the Young Scot staff who will give us an indication of what they want us to do and how to do it, after that It is handed over to the young people to go through and most times do something completely different but it will work all the same.

The projects that I have been involved in and am currently involved in will be making such an impact into the way that Scotland sees its young people…

The process that groups go through, is first of all we will put on the Young Scot website that we have a new project that is looking for volunteers to apply for. After the applications have been submitted they are looked at and the volunteers and invited to a welcome session to find out all the information that the project will do and if it involves any 3rd party organisation e.g. Scottish government then they will be there as well. Once that has been done then it will go through different meetings and workshops about the project and then once it has finished then there will be an evaluation at the end to see what we can improve on if anything.

An achievement that I have had through volunteering with Young Scot is that my very first group won a Young Scot award for building a maze in the shape of the commonwealth logo in the riccard Johnston wood in Motherwell. This was a grant that we got for £46,500 to build it and we got support and input from all of north Lanarkshire who donated all their old bricks so we could build a pathway to and around the maze.

It is so important to have young people involved at every point of the project. The reason for this is that young people will have different ideas and a different look on the project/idea that others may never think of. With young people involved in each part this will also allow the project to be youth lead which is such a key thing to do as this will allow the young people to experience what the roles and responsibilities are in doing a full project.

With young people they will be nervous at this if you say “you are doing it all” but if the young people are given a small guide at the start then it will work and fall into place within a few sessions. The projects that I have been involved in and am currently involved in will be making such an impact into the way that Scotland sees its young people and this ever lasting legacy will be what Young Scot co-design is all about changing the perspective on how people see young people.

Not standing in street corners drinking or smoking but helping their community and doing things that will give them a better start to life. This is the importance and direction that is being executed by co-design and its young people.

This blog first appeared on https://www.ads.org.uk/esbc18blog_yoyp_rosscowan/