Seven Ways You Can Raise Awareness About Issues That Affect You

Across the globe people are speaking out on issues that impact them and trying to make change. From education to environment, more and more young people are making sure their voices are heard. If you want to raise awareness about certain issues and try to change things, Cerys, 15 from Dumfries & Galloway shares some ways you can do so.

1. The Scottish Youth Parliament

The Scottish Youth Parliament allows young people across Scotland to represent their local area. SYP provides a platform for young people to talk about issues in their community and allows them to develop important skills. By becoming an MSYP, young people can have their voice heard in Scottish politics and help in national campaigns. Click here to find out more.

2. Social Media

Through social media platforms, you can have your voice heard. You can sign and create online petitions, share videos and articles that highlight certain issues. You can create your own account or website where you can post about things you care passionately about. Social media is very good for raising awareness about issues or campaigns as well as encouraging other young people to speak out.

3. School

If your issue affects your local area or schools in your area then talking to your school community is worth doing so. You can join or create a pupil council, so you can discuss your issue with other pupils and staff. You can write a letter to your head teacher about the issue and suggest ideas for overcoming it. Through your school you can also educate others about tackling the issue and preventing other problems occurring in the future.

4. Contact Your MSP

Another good way to raise your voice is to get in contact with your local MSP. You can visit your MSP at one of their surgeries to discuss issues affecting yourself and your area. You can also email or write a letter to your MSP explaining your problems and your solution if you have one. It is the job of MSPs to represent their constituents in parliament and speak about issues on behalf of them so by contacting your MSP you can make sure you are heard when decisions are being made in parliament. You can find more information on the Scottish Parliament Website.

5. Local Media

You can raise awareness through the media. You can write a letter to your local newspaper or try and publish an article in it. You can also contact your local radio station asking if you could come in and talk to them about your issue. TV is also a very good way to have your voice heard. You could contact your local news reporter informing them of your issue and offering to talk about it on the news. The media is a good way to reach out to people that don’t use online platforms as much.

6. Youth Groups

Investigate youth groups in your area, see what kind of work they do and what their ambition is and think about joining one. If you and your friends are passionate about making change, you can start your own youth group. Create a name, logo and a social media platform. Hold regular meetings so you can discuss issues as well as inviting other people in your local area to find out what’s going on and get involved. You can also create a goal that your group wants to work towards through raising awareness and volunteering. We have more information about applying for funding.

7. Campaigns

Have you got an issue your very passionate about and want to act on? Then you can start your own campaign! Form a group with your friends and decide your campaign plan and goal. Create a petition, raise awareness through social media and your local media too. Contact influencers in your area as well as your MSP. Organise your own demonstration or march to help raise awareness for your cause. We have loads more information about getting involved in campaigns.