The video we created with the young people allowed them to share their views on the services that supported them in order to improve those services for other young people.
The video was designed to inform staff training at services involved with Child Sexual Exploitation (CSE) such as the police, children services, youth projects, schools and the NHS. This was achieved by explaining what forms CSE can take and how interacting with a professional can make young people feel.
The project provided a safe space for young people to speak freely about their experiences allowing them to have a voice to change current systems. They talked about what worked, what didn’t, and what could have been offered but wasn’t.
ProMo listened to the young peoples stories, helping them convey their experience in a narrative and animation that would influence how professionals behave to future victims of CSE.
After writing the script, the young people were invited to visit Radio Platform, the youth-led radio station at the Wales Millennium Center, to record the script in English. Other young people for Radio Platform have helped the group to record the script in Welsh.
By viewing the video, service providers can learn how to improve services from those who have experienced exploitation.
The video was launched at Think Again! Tackling Exploitation event at County Hall, where young people from schools across Cardiff came together to showcase their presentation on CSE.
The video was well-received, having more than 900 retweets on that day over 110,000 views.
The project was nominated for the Youth Excellence Awards and came first in the category ‘Promoting Young People’s Rights’.
A Welsh Government representative said:
“The judges felt this was a unique and special contribution to the promotion of rights for vulnerable young people. The project demonstrated a commitment to creative and effective change mechanisms to improve the lives of young people now and in the future.”
Congratulations to everyone involved in this deeply personal and important piece of work. We extend our thanks to all the young people who shared their stories and YMCA Cardiff for inviting us to take part in this unique project.