Update on the Harris Youth Panel
The Harris’ Youth Panel meets once a month to share their ideas to help shape the #HarrisYourPlace project and inject it with a new and fresh energy.
The panel is currently made up of eight young people, aged 12 to 17, with two of them having been part of the panel since at least 2020 – that’s dedication for you!
For the past three meetings, the panel has been thinking about how the new young people’s space at the Harris (‘No.9’) might run. Transporting their minds through time to 2025, they have been imagining what kind of atmosphere ‘No.9’ will have, as well as the attitudes they hope the Harris staff will have towards all the different types of young people that will use ‘No.9’.
Recently, the panel met with the Access All Areas Project – a project led by young disabled people and professional poet Helena Ascough – to have a discussion about accessibility and get some advice. In particular, they talked about how to increase awareness in order to make activities, projects and events for young people more accessible and inclusive. A few of the things suggested were: awareness of dietary requirements and allergies when providing refreshments; easily and safely accessible locations for activities; dates and times that suit young people; Autism awareness and consideration of young people that experience sensory overload and might require a quiet space.
For the first time, the panel included a discussion about young people who are parents. The panel gathered some ideas about how to ensure that young parents can still get involved in, and not feel excluded from, the Harris’ events for young people.
The Harris’ Youth Panel is looking for groups of young people to share ideas and advice or to team up with. If you’re part of a group of young people aged 12+, or if you know of one that would be interested in meeting up with the Harris’ Youth Panel, please get in touch! Contact Kyra: firstname.lastname@example.org or give her a ring: 01772 905412.
Harris Your Place
Harris Your Place is a £16 million project set to restore and reimagine the Harris for 21st-century audiences as a cultural learning space. The aim of this project is to protect the building and the architecture for future generations whilst enhancing accessibility options and positioning the Harris as a community hub for Preston and Lancashire.
The capital project is more than simply preserving this much-loved building; Harris wants to ensure that it remains a vibrant heart of the community. A place where people want to spend their time.