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  • Sharon Lovell (SL) (Chair)
  • Simon Stewart (SSt)
  • Kelly Harris (KH)
  • Marco Gil-Cervantes (MG)
  • Sian Elen Tomos (ST)
  • Deb Austin (DA)
  • David Williams (DW)
  • Joanne Sims (JS)
  • Shahinoor Alom (SA)
  • Lowri Jones (LJ)
  • Hannah Wharf, Deputy Director, Support for Learners, Welsh Government (HW)
  • Dyfan Evans, Head of Youth Engagement Branch, Welsh Government (DE)
  • Donna Robins, Senior Youth Work Strategy Manager, Welsh Government (DR)
  • Dareth Edwards, Senior Youth Work Strategy Manager, Welsh Government (DaE)
  • Victoria Allen, Youth Work Strategy Manager, Welsh Government (VA)
  • Kirsty Harrington, Youth Work Policy Manager, Welsh Government (KHa)

Conflicts of interest

None declared.

Young Person’s Committee and engagement with young people

The current contractual arrangement with EYST, Llamau and Urdd Gobaith Cymru to co‑ordinate the Young Persons Committee will end in July 2023. Key learning will be shared with Board members on receipt of the end of contract report.

Recipients of the Strategic Voluntary Youth Work Organisation Grant (voluntary organisations) and Youth Support Grant (local authorities) have been invited to apply for additional funding to extend existing work to involve young people in the design and delivery of services and to pilot new methods of doing this. Several small pilot initiatives will be funded to explore and evaluate alternative mechanisms for genuine co-production to inform future developments. These will include street-based outreach projects, hustings, single issue social media campaigns and more traditional youth forums to capture the voice of a diverse range of young people.

DA referenced similar work taking place within the health sector in partnership with the Children's Commissioner which includes consideration of how this could be integrated with the Welsh Baccalaureate qualification.

Action Point 1: SL asked that the outgoing co-chairs of the Young Persons Committee are formally thanked for their contribution to the work of the Board.

Action Point 2: Board members were asked to consider opportunities to mainstream the participation of young people across all workstreams.

Action Point 3: VA to arrange a further meeting with SL and KH, as Chair of Young People are Thriving IPG, to establish next steps.

Meeting 18 April 2023: minutes and actions

Progress on actions from the meeting held on 18 April 2023 was reviewed.

Implementation plan

Welsh Government (WG) officials set out their proposed approach to the development of an Implementation Plan. The Plan would act as a ‘road map’ for the sector, setting out the key steps to be taken to develop and take forward the Interim Youth Work Board’s recommendations. The workplans currently in development by the five IPGs would be fed into the development of this overarching Implementation Plan.

WG officials proposed that these workplans, and the overarching implementation, are prepared over the summer to enable publication in autumn 2023.

DW asked for consideration of the development of young person friendly materials (potentially including visual materials) to accompany the more detailed Plan.

Aligned with the development of the IP, Board members were also keen to establish a structure to share regular updates on the work of the Board with the sector and wider stakeholders and individual Board members. The Board also discussed other opportunities, including online engagement, to share the latest information with stakeholders and provide opportunities to discuss the work.

Action Point 4: Board members who chair IPGs were asked to work with their groups to draft workplans by 21 July, to enable officials to incorporate this information into the Implementation Plan, to be drafted over the summer.

Action Point 5: Officials will establish a mechanism to gather, compile and circulate regular updates from the Board to stakeholders.

Action Point 6: KHa to co-ordinate the development of core materials, for example, presentation slides, summarising the Board’s work.

National body for youth work services

DR set out the background to the Interim Board’s recommendation for the establishment of a national body for youth work and outlined the key areas of consideration for Board members as part of the next phase of this work.

Members discussed a number of aspects that would need to be considered in the development of this recommendation, including a potential remit of a national body. The Board agreed that engagement with the sector as the work progressed was vital as they were aware that views on the development of such a body vary significantly. The independent funding review, and its link to this work, was also discussed. DR acknowledged the importance of looking at these in parallel, but that the remit of a body would drive its scale and structure and so it was important so focus on this as a next step.

DR advised that work is already underway to consider other bodies which have been established by the Welsh Government as a method of gaining insight into best practice and approaches that may be fed into this work in due course.

Action point 7: KHa to arrange a Board meeting to focus specifically on the remit of a potential national body

Any other business (AOB)

KHa provided an update on the arrangements for Youth Work Week (23 to 30 June 2023) as part of wider marketing and engagement activity.

DE provided an update on budget allocations, and again invited the Board to contact him with any questions about this.

The next meeting of the Board will be held on 14 September 2023, focusing primarily on more detailed discussion on a potential national body for youth work services.

Whilst the membership of the five IPGs has now been confirmed, the Board discussed the opportunity to invite other individuals to participate in discussions at a later date. It was agreed that this should be considered as work progresses.

Action point 8: Board members to continue to consider IPG membership as work progresses and offer opportunities for new members to join as appropriate.