NOA Youth Board is BACK!


Welcome back to the youth board blog, after a forced hiatus due to Covid-19, we are back and aiming to continue from where we left off! We aim to maintain our focus of running open, accessible, and inclusive projects that champion youth voice. We aim to make Norwich a place where everyone feels like they belong.

I’m Jan, the new Youth Board Administrator on the NOA programme. My ethos is that through kindness comes inclusion, which is essential for the development of young people. I aim to get secondary school students around Norwich to come to Youth Board meetings and share ideas of how we can direct our funding to benefit all students in the city.

Our main areas of focus include promoting youth voice – that is having young people communicate with our staff, encouraging participation from a diverse array of backgrounds to get a fully representative idea of young people’s lived experiences in Norwich. We aim to amplify the voices of young people, and create an environment in which they feel valued, sought, and acted upon.

Building on previous work done by the youth board, we would like to focus on giving children the opportunities to learn skills they may be unable to learn in school. Projects can be moulded by students any way they want, and could concern the environment, mental health, physical activity, mindfulness, art, music, cookery etc.

We are currently looking for students to join our youth board and share their ideas! Our first meeting is set to be on December 8th between 16:30-18:00 at a venue in the city centre (TBC), where food will be provided! If you are interested in attending, please fill out an event registration form here:

First, we are also holding three weekly meetings as a partner of the Norwich 2040 Vision. This is to ensure youth voice can inform decisions made by the Norwich 2040 City Vision Board – to change Norwich for the better for now and in the future. These meetings will be held on the 23rd and 30th of November between 16:30-18:00 at a venue in the city centre (TBC) and the 7th December between 16:30-18:00 online.

If you would like to attend, please fill out the registration form here:

For regular updates on what the NOA Youth Board and its partners are doing, go and follow the newly revamped Youth Board page on Instagram at @noayouthboard.

Thanks for reading and we hope to see you at our meetings!

Summer Holiday Activities Fund: Deadline 12th June

The Sunday Times’ 2019 Christmas Appeal, in partnership with the Education Endowment Foundation, raised more than £1 million in donations from readers.  Norwich, as an area of poor social mobility, can access a proportion of this funding.

This funding is not part of the Norwich Opportunity Area programme.  NOA have offered to support by linking community organisations with schools, to create new partnerships and to identify students who will benefit the most from support.

We are inviting expressions of interest from voluntary or community organisations (including registered charities/companies) or from schools. We are asking providers for ideas about how they could achieve the below outcomes within their community:

  • Provide a regular free decent meal for children in Norwich.
  • Provide take-away resources pupils could use at home to support their ongoing learning.
  • Provide engaging activities pupils can participate in over summer that they wouldn’t usually take part in (in line with social distancing measures as appropriate at that time).
  • Encourage (and provide resources/information to enable) pupils to engage in activities with their families that encourage them to learn something new, encourage healthy active lifestyles and explore the world around them.
  • Encourage and support pupils to take part in activities that encourage them to stay positive when things are uncertain, recognise how much they’ve learnt outside of school and build up their confidence about returning to formal learning. 

Providers are asked to complete an Expression of Interest Form and return via email to Katie White by Friday 12th June:

We will be in touch with all organisations who submit an EOI to discuss your ideas in more detail. We expect to make final funding decisions w/c 29th June.

Our latest offers to schools in the Norwich OA

This is an outline of current funded programmes that schools in Norwich can take up, with links to further details and contact details of providers and project managers. Some of the offers are time-limited with a deadline for sign-up, so take a look as soon as you can!

Offers for Primary Schools- here

Offers for Secondary- here

Offers from the Research School- here

Cover Cost form for CPD Programmes- here

If you would like any more information on any of the offers, please fill in this google form and one of the team will get back to you.

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What’s changed in the NOA?

On Tuesday 10th September, almost 100 local leaders attended a breakfast meeting to talk about what’s changed so far in the Norwich Opportunity Area.

The attendees included teachers, providers, school governors, local authorities and others passionate about improving education in Norwich. Most importantly, we heard directly from a group of Year 6 students about what’s important to them and what they think is good about education in Norwich.

Read our report about what’s changed in the Norwich Opportunity Area so far.

Norwich Opportunity Area Schools Mentoring kicks off in September

Your Own Place will be supporting students in three Norwich secondary schools from September.  Volunteer mentors will work with students in Year 11 as they plan their transition to what’s next.

Your Own Place, who have already trained over 150 mentors in Norfolk in the last 20 months, are seeking more volunteers who want to develop their own skills and help shape a young life.

Norwich has been identified as an Opportunity Area by the Department for Education because life chances for young people in the city are not equal.  In Norwich, much more than elsewhere in the country, young people’s outcomes are determined by their background.  Having a relationship with a mentor is shown to be particularly valuable in supporting students to feel confident and ambitious about the future.

Your Own Place Schools Mentoring is part of the Norwich Opportunity Area ambition to ensure young people have the information and support they need to move successfully between school, college, university and into work.

Volunteer mentors will complete a high-quality two-day training session and have access to support and a peer network of mentors through Your Own Place.

Trained mentors will be supported to meet a Year 11 student and have regular positive and aspiring conversations about their futures, the opportunities they have and their next steps.  Can you spare an hour a week?

Find out more here:  07530 028446