‘How can we make a difference?’ Young people discuss housing, work and transport at Cambridge Commons event

Students from sixth form colleges in Cambridge called for a greater role in their city at a workshop organised by The Cambridge Commons.

The event, dubbed Talkin bout Our Generation, gave 16-18 year olds a chance to air their aspirations for the future and learn about housing, work and local politics with local young experts.

Hills Road student Sam Polhill said: “It’s about identifying the problems that students and young people face … how we can actually change those, make a tangible difference.”

“I’m glad I came. I hope there’ll be similar events like this.”

Transport is a top issue, he said, both in terms of reliability and cost.  But he also wanted more involvement for young people in politics.

He said: “Votes at 16 is something I’m very passionate about and the Cambridge Commons have certainly picked up on that as being a general problem students agree with.”

“Young people are listened to up to the point where they disagree with what other people are saying.”

“In the future, more meetings like these would certainly help to identify more problems, particularly those that young people feel.”

Facilitator Frances Foley said Cambridge Commons was a hub for local political activity and could help to inspire young people to get involved.

She said: “[Young people] care, they have opinions, their voice really matters.”

“What can we actually do to engage them, rather than just talking about listening to young people in a cliched way.”

The event was organised in partnership with The Cambridge News at the Friends Meeting House in Cambridge. Also included in the speakers were local political activists Joe Dale and Stuart Tuckwood.

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