On the day of the announcement of her tenure as Young People’s Laureate for London Momtaza Mehri, with out-going Laureate and programme Ambassador Caleb Femi, met with a group of young people to co-create a Youth Manifesto. The Manifesto will inform and help shape Momtaza’s work as Laureate over the coming year.
Youth Manifesto 2018
The Young People’s Laureate must be aware, relatable, and address the concerns of young people.
The Young People’s Laureate must use resources and create opportunities in order to make poetry more accessible in local areas.
The Young People’s Laureate must use a variety of multimedia platforms and formats to connect with young people (social media).
We demand that young people take ownership of their poetry.
We demand that we be allowed to be who we are and not who you think we are, or should be.
We demand the right to our own stories in our voices.
To inspire young people’s passion for poetry and make them as excited as we are.
To spread as much knowledge around poetry and pathways into poetry as we can.
To expand the definition of poetry so that it is open to everyone living in our city and everyone who needs it.
We, the young creatives of London, believe that funding for the arts should be easily accessible and available to all young people, by providing them with a network of people across organisations and societies that are able to help with accessing the money.
We are committed to actively encouraging educational institutions to put poetry and the arts at the forefront of education alongside core subjects and bringing qualified contemporary artists in to teach them.
We are dedicated to ensuring that all voices are heard and encouraged, especially BAME voices and members of the LGBTQ+ communities by creating and promoting spaces and organisations that are in keeping with this view.
Poetry deserves to be championed. It deserves to sit at the heart of society and be given as equal respect as other professional fields and careers. Our Young People’s Laureate will be an exemplary role model of:
What poetry can do, and
How pathways can be created in the industry.
We seek to encourage young people to use poetry as a vehicle for discussion, self-help, therapy and self-expression.
With thanks to: Afope Ogunremi, Charnjit Gill, Bella Cox, Tatiana Walker, Aneesha Hussain and Barbara Oluokun.
Go here for more information about the Young Peoples Laureate for London programme: https://www.spreadtheword.org.uk/projects/young-peoples-laureate/
To get in touch with the Young People’s Laureate for London, email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Published 12 April 2018