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Issues and Facts

How can we demonstrate that our youth group is equal and inclusive?

An inclusive youth group is where a young person will feel welcome, secure and comfortable and that they can celebrate their identity especially those aspects of their identity  that make them different from others such as their culture or ethnicity, sexual orientation, ability, gender, health including mental health, education, parental status, involvement in juvenile justice etc. 

What is intercultural youth work?

Intercultural youth work is a way of working with people from culturally diverse backgrounds. It sees cultural diversity as an enriching aspect of society. It also acknowledges the reality of racism and the need to create conditions where social harmony is promoted and supported. An intercultural approach stresses the need for collaboration, open and honest dialogue, active participation, understanding and respect for all.

What is equality?

Equality is not always about treating everyone the same – it is about treating people in such a way that the outcome for each person can be the same. This means putting things in place to support people to achieve similar outcomes. For a person who is blind it may involve having screen readers on your computers and removing obstacles in your building.

Asking young people about their identity – what is good practice?

One way of finding out if you are inclusive is to gather information about your members. If you use a registration form then some of this information can be gathered by adapting your forms. A registration form allows people to describe themselves as they want – whether that is declaring that they have a disability or not, telling you what they consider their ethnic/cultural identity to be, perhaps what religion they are, maybe what languages they speak.

Ethnicity and ethnic groups – an explanation of these terms

An ‘ethnic group’ has been defined as a group that regards itself or is regarded by others as a distinct community by virtue of certain characteristics that will help to distinguish the group from the surrounding community. Ethnicity is considered to be shared characteristics such as culture, language, religion, and traditions, which contribute to a person or group’s identity.

Ethnicity has been described as residing in:

Targeted versus mainstream youth work – what are the issues?

Many people wonder if inclusion should be an aspect of all youth groups or if youth organisations should have groups that target particular young people in order to effectively and appropriately meet their needs. For example, groups have been set up to work with asylum seekers, young people with a disability, Travellers, young people who are gay, lesbian, or bisexual etc.