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Health and Social Care

Growing youth social action in health and social care

Social action, including volunteering, fundraising and campaigning, creates a double benefit for those who take part and the communities they are helping.

Young people have great potential to make a positive impact on their communities by getting involved in social action. They have the ability to make a significant difference to serious issues, from loneliness to bullying to mental health and the stigmas attached to it. Young people tend to have a broad, positive ideology when it comes to making changes and we should do all we can to help them utilise this.

The benefits of social action are reciprocated, as young people’s involvement can help them develop valuable employability skills, boost their access to further education and training, and support enhanced wellbeing.

Currently 4 in 10 young people aged between 10 and 20 in the UK get involved in social action, but almost double this number of people would like to contribute more to their communities, given the chance. However, particularly in less affluent communities, there can be obstacles that restrict their ability to get involved. The #iwill campaign seeks to enable all young people to participate in social action and benefit from their involvement.

There are three main strands of activity that support youth social action in health and social care:


Make an #iwill pledge

Support these aims? Head over here and make your own #iwill pledge to support more young people to get involved in health and social care related social action.

You can see the list of organisations that have already done so within health and social care here.

Growing young volunteers in hospitals: Pears #iwill Hospitals 
Pears Foundation, in partnership with the Department for Culture, Media and Sport and the Big Lottery Fund, are managing a dedicated strand of the #iwill Fund to support the growth of inclusive, high-quality, youth social action opportunities in the Health and Social Care sector.
The programme of funding builds on previous reports from Nesta, Livity and Volunteering Matters and will primarily provide seed-funding for volunteer manager posts within NHS Charities. Volunteer managers will target 16-18 years olds and prioritise recruiting young people from a wide range of socio-economic backgrounds in order to tackle participation gaps. You can find out more about the NHS Charities involved in this here:

Beacon Areas
In addition to working with the Pears #iwill hospitals, Step Up To Serve, NHS England, NHS Improvement and the Pears Foundation are working with seven areas across England that are prepared to take the lead on showcasing and promoting the impact young people can have on health and social care: Birmingham, Bristol, South East London, Newcastle, Sheffield, Dorset and Suffolk.

As a Beacon Area, each area is committing to do the following:

Capturing and showcasing existing activity that highlights the impact of young people in health and social care
Developing new, sustainable activity that supports each of the three themes of the campaign’s health and social strategy
Hold a celebration event during #iwill week in November
Take part in the Public Conversation campaign
Hold a Big Lunch – resources available here:

For more information, click below:

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