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Phase 1 Report

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website is fine by me.

website is fine by me. (Wrexham Youth volunteering panel focus group) We should all be able to access the same thing regardless of age, ability or background. You could have a 25 year old but then their birthday is next week so then they can’t use it. If there is specific information for young people, then you should have something on the page that directs you to a young person section for them to use. (Ethnic Youth Support Team focus group) When discussing how branding can be targeted at young people by making it colourful, fun and easy to use, it became apparent that the young people we spoke to just wanted a user-friendly site that could also be used by other ages. They spoke about how ‘any site needs to be dynamic’ to be popular and well used. They also discussed that it should be similar to the sites they already use to socially interact with their friends e.g. Facebook, they want the volunteering opportunities to be streamlined ‘Don’t add another name to something if you don’t need to. Keep it simple … make sure that it makes sense.’ One young person aptly summed up the argument for a youth volunteering brand separated from other volunteering brands: We hear of things needing to be youth friendly, but why isn’t everything youth friendly? It should be fun for everyone! 30

Branding Conclusions and Recommendations It is clear that young people gain considerable benefits from volunteering opportunities, expressing their main motivations, to make a difference, help their community and gain news skills. Key words chosen by young people to describe youth volunteering were fun, friendship and experience, yet none of the current volunteering brands are adequately capturing these motivations and meanings. Our consultation findings have identified a number of common themes expressed by young people to consider for a streamlined and strengthened youth volunteering brand and web presence in Wales: It is not necessarily important to have a separate website for youth volunteering, more that opportunities for young people should be able to be clearly identified and be accessible. Visibility of youth volunteering needs to be increased, linked to social media (in particular Facebook and Twitter) as a way to connect young people with opportunities and increased promotion through schools and youth centres. Simplicity is key - websites would benefit from further filtering content for specific youth opportunities. Volunteering Wales and GwirVol do not clearly differentiate opportunities for young people and distinct age groups within that category i.e. under 14, under 16, under 18, Over 18+ and Over 21+ so both fail in terms of accessibility to young people. 31

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