Mosaic for 16-25 year olds
Our Mosaic project for young people introduced 16 to 25 year olds to National Parks
In 2016 we finished a three year project introducing 16 to 25 year olds to National Parks. By the end of the project we had worked with 138 Young Champions, volunteers who get involved in National Parks in a variety of ways, and introduced over 1600 young people to National Parks for the first time. We partnered with the Lake District, Yorkshire Dales, Northumberland, Exmoor and New Forest National Parks and the YHA. The Young Champions did a wide range of activities including organising visits for other young people, conservation volunteerings, advising the National Park Authority on a range of issues, and testing out YHA hostels to see if they are catering for young people. We provided a range of training opportunities based around each Champion's interests.
Through their involvement with National Parks nearly all the Young Champions gained in confidence and the majority felt they had better chances of securing employment. Many Champions have gone on to get employment, 12 in areas directly related to National Parks; others now volunteer regularly or have started college. Champions also report better health and social skills as a result of being involved in National Parks. To read more about the project's achievements, please look at the Executive Summary of our Evaluation, carried out by the University of Plymouth.
We found that the project worked well due to the personal support offered to each Young Champion to lead their own engagement with in their local National Park, being part of a national group of Champions for National Parks and working in close partnership with National Park Authorities and a wide range of youth support organisations.
We have put together a set of materials to celebrate the end of our Mosaic youth project and its achievements. These can all be found in our Mosaic Resources Centre. The materials include:
Case Studies from the Mosaic youth project
Activity Case Studies: A set of four activity case studies which demonstrate how Mosaic works. The case studies are of a pony trek on Exmoor following a traditional route and organised by a group of Young Champions, the Full Cycle woodland management project in the Lake District, a presentation to all New Forest National Park Authority staff and a bike ride from the west to east coast of the UK organised by Northumberland Champions.
Karl Epps tells us about becoming a regular volunteer in the New Forest and some of the physical challenges of conservation volunteering in a wheelchair.
Leia Hoggarth tells us about her experiences with the Full Cycle project in the Lake District and the impact it's had on her.
Ollie Barnett talks about new-found confidence and going on to get a job with the YHA after being a Champion.
Adam Philip-Phillips talks about the inspiration he’s got from National Parks; taking his Dad to the Lake District for the first time and speaking to NPA members.
Cameron Crags talks about his biking adventures in Northumberland and making films about National Parks.
Short guide to running activities with young people
We've also produced a short guide to running activities in National Parks with 16 to 25 year olds with tips and advice on everything from getting people interested in the first place to evaluating an event.
How do I find out more?
Funders and partners:
Also funded by: Francis Scott Charitable Trust, Sir John Fisher Foundation, J P Getty Trust, Yorkshire Dales Millennium Fund, Exmoor Partnership Fund, New Forest Sustainable Development Fund