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31 March 2021

Understanding the needs of young people in Westminster

King’s MSc students help Young Westminster Foundation put young people’s experiences in the borough on the agenda

Our city, our future: understanding the needs of young people in Westminster

Students from the MSc Public Policy & Management programme at King’s Business School have partnered again with Young Westminster Foundation to co-design a project to assess the needs of young people aged 13 to 25 in King’s local communities.

Working with Young Westminster Foundation (YWF) and research consultancy Rocket Science, students Shrooq Khan and Devika Thapa designed a peer-researcher project to examine the diverse experiences of young people across the borough.

Rocket Science led virtual focus groups and worked with Partnership for Young London to train a group of 10 peer researchers, who used their lived experience and understanding of the community to conduct virtual interviews and collect information about their peers.

The final findings were published this week in Young Westminster Foundation’s report, Our City, Our Future, which describes the issues and experiences of local young people in 2020/21.

Young people reported that the pandemic has had a significant impact on their lives but were generally optimistic about communities supporting each other better in the future.

Working with Rocket Science, Partnership for Young London and Kings College London’s MSc in Public Policy & Management Programme has allowed us to draw on a wealth of research expertise to inform the work undertaken through the time of Covid-19.

Phil Barron, CEO, Young Westminster Foundation

Young Westminster Foundation is a cross sector partnership connecting youth charities, young people, businesses, Westminster City Council, and other partners, including universities like King’s.

YWF first became involved with King’s through our commitment to working with organisations in our home boroughs of Southwark, Lambeth and Westminster to create opportunities for collaboration and mutual benefit.

The partnership between YWF and King’s Business School was one of seven partnerships with local charities and London-based think tanks designed to give students the opportunity to apply their research skills with real-world problems.

This is the second time that Public Policy & Management students have worked with the YWF, after conducting the needs analysis for a previous report.

MSc Public Policy & Management students gain so much from the programme's partnership with YWF. Not only do students get valuable, hands-on and substantive experience in working with a top London social sector organisation, they get to contribute in a meaningful way to our local communities

Dr Susan Trenholm, Lecturer in Management & Strategy, Programme Director, MSc Public Policy & Management

King’s partnership with Young Westminster Foundation continues to go from strength to strength, demonstrating the potential of London as a living classroom and providing King’s students with opportunities to apply their learning in creating a platform for young people in Westminster. This project epitomises King’s ambition to create mutually beneficial opportunities that draw on our strengths in research, contribute valuable learning and make a difference with, in and for our local communities.

Baroness Deborah Bull, Vice President and Principal (London)