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Why you should join the Youth Advisory Panel

Why you should join the Youth Advisory Panel


The panel members receive training with us, come together as a group at our “residentials” twice a year, get to attend online and in-person events, campaign with us, and have their voices heard across our organisation and beyond. If you like the sound of this, read to the bottom to see how you can be the first to find out when applications open.

Want to know why you should apply? 

We’ve asked three of our YAP members, Melissa, Rachel and Beyoncé to tell us about their experiences as members of the panel.

Melissa, 18, Liverpool. Melissa is interested in using the law for gender equality, particularly in our Crime Not Compliment campaign

Melissa, can you explain what is the Youth Advisory Panel (YAP)?

“YAP is a group of like-minded young people who are tired of waiting for change and instead want to create it. It is a supportive network where you feel comfortable discussing serious issues and is a place where you can form friendships with people from around the UK. With the help of the Plan International UK team, you are given amazing opportunities like going to parliamentary events and appearing in social media campaigns. However, most importantly, you feel like your voice is valued.”

Melissa, Why did you apply to join the panel?

“I applied to YAP because I knew that I had an interest in women’s and girls’ rights, but I just didn’t know how to act on it. I was attracted to Plan International UK particularly because of their work across the globe. It was important to me that I could educate myself on varied issues that all girls face, not just limited to the UK. Plan International UK understands that any problems that girls deal with in our world are obstacles that we all must work together to tackle.”

Beyonce, 19, London. Beyonce has shared her BSL skills with us at the youth residential as well as presenting on our Campaign across London

Beyonce, what would you like to say to someone who might be nervous to apply?

“All YAP is asking for is that you show your passion, personality and commitment. If you want to apply, you’re already proving you want to help improve girls' rights. Your commitment can make a really big difference. If you’re still having doubts do email the team or have a look on our social media to see the impact, we have made and see if this is the right role for you.”

Beyonce, talk a little about your personality, how does being a part of the YAP at Plan International UK suit you?

“I’m an introvert, but by meeting everyone, I was able to come out of my shell and express myself more. YAP suits me due to my passion for girls' rights and young children around the world. Due to us being a group, I was able to share how I feel about working in groups, public speaking and many other ways that I do feel comfortable. You can meet some of my friendly and supportive group members in this video.”

Rachel, 19, Belfast. Rachel advocates passionately for equal access for all in every space she gets with YAP

Rachel, what has YAP helped you to do that you wouldn’t have otherwise done?

“YAP has definitely given me a chance to learn more about the issues I care about with other young people around the UK. I never would have been able to meet so many people from mainland UK if it wasn’t for YAP since I’m from Northern Ireland. I can genuinely say that YAP has helped me to become a better advocate and ally, on a wide variety of issues. YAP has also given me incredible opportunities to share my views, such as talking about women in politics on Hillary Clinton’s Instagram, you can see how Maryam and Dinah my fellow panel members have shared their views too below.”

Rachel, If you could give someone joining YAP one piece of advice, what would you say?

“Get ready to meet amazing people. My fellow YAP members are the most extraordinary people. We represent such a wide spectrum, and yet I can honestly say I’m really close with all of them. You will make some of the best friends who are equally passionate about making the UK and the world a better place. It’s rare that you can meet someone you can joke around with and share the deeper issues you’re passionate about. With YAP, you get a full panel of friends, supporters and allies. You won’t regret it, I certainly haven’t.”

Ready to find out more?

If you’re interested in applying for the Youth Advisory Panel, please send us an email to register your interest - Our applications open in July 2023, and you will be the first to know. You don’t need any experience or particular skills to apply, you just have to be between 14-19, based in the UK and have an interest to learn more about our work.

Want to hear more about the Youth Advisory Panel? Check this out:

Take a look at our YAP member Maryam’s Blog about what she’d do if she was Prime Minister for the day.

Hear YAP member Dinah in conversation with Clara Amfo on our Instagram.

Get to know some more about our Youth Advisory Panel members in this short video.

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