The country’s first ever formal qualification for young people in Grant Making and Participatory Budgeting (PB) was launched today.
The free course will support young people and community activists to be involved in national and local decisions on services and budgets, ensuring there is youth-led participation at local level, and young people’s voices are heard and acted upon.
The new qualification is SCQF Level 5 and free places will be available for 750 participants who are volunteering with PB and/or Grant Making processes in Scotland.
Youth involvement in community decision-making is a key part of youth advocacy and progressive democratic decision making. More and more young people are involved in decision making at council level so this new course will be invaluable in increasing expertise and confidence.
The programme has been developed with Fife College which will run the course over the next three years.
Tom Arthur, Community Wealth Minister, said: “I congratulate everyone behind the launch of this online course - the first of its kind in Scotland.
“We want to empower communities to shape their individual and collective futures, with participatory budgeting at the forefront for involving communities in decision making that benefits local economies, the people, and businesses within it.”
Tim Frew, chief executive, YouthLink Scotland said “Young people’s participation is crucial in order to effect real and meaningful change for communities.
“This new course will create spaces for young people and community members to explore these democratic systems and reflect on how their own decisions will positively impact their lives and the lives of those around them.”
The course was also welcomed by senior executives at Fife College.
Iain Hawker, vice principal, said: “This innovative course will empower people in our communities, especially young people, ensuring their voices are more effectively heard when it comes to the decisions that affect them directly.
“We look forward to continuing to work with our partners to help learners gain an understanding of the value of participatory budgeting and grant making processes, equipping them with the knowledge and skills required to confidently participate in important local decisions.”