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#IwillWeek is here! Will you take part?
By Sophie Hack
The #IWill campaign is a nationwide campaign to make social action a part of everyday life for 10 to 20-year-olds, aiming to get as many people as possible taking social action by 2020.
#IwillWeek is part of the Step Up to Serve charity, that has had backing from the Conservative Party and Prime Minister Theresa May.
From 21 - 27 November, students and students’ unions will pledge to make a social change, benefiting themselves and the world around them.
The NUS has pledged to work with students’ unions to evaluate and share the impact of student opportunities, provide training to students’ unions to help increase the number of students participating in activities and highlight youth social action throughout the country.
Chloe Donovan, trustee for the #IWill campaign said: “We already know that taking part in social action empowers young people to become active citizens, capable of tackling issues in their own communities. Yet taking these experiences into leadership positions, such as trusteeship, helps them to realise that collectively we are capable of achieving so much more.”
Timothy Hancock is an #IWill ambassador, who raises money every year through an ornate Christmas lights display. Last year nearly £2000 was raised for the Marie Curie cancer charity, and his pledge this year is to “continue volunteering for the local community, bringing light and hope through the dark nights of winter”.
Timothy says young people get such bad press because of a minority who are up to no good and he wants to prove to his peers and older people that this doesn’t have to be the norm.
“I wanted to encourage my peers to look at their day-to-day lives to see how they are already helping people or how they could help in very simple ways. They don’t have to deck their garden full of decorations at Christmas to make a difference, that’s just my way of doing it!”
There are more and more ways to get involved and be part of a social change. Those between 10 and 20 years old can get involved through the Princes Trust, British Youth Council, the DofE award and plenty more charities and organisations. Those who are above 20 years of age and still want to take part can become an ambassador or lend a hand to national and local organisations.
I'm currently studying Media and Communications at Birmingham City University, studying journalism theory as well as the practical side. I specialise in entertainment and music journalism, one of my highlights was interviewing Wheatus last year in a Steakhouse! I'm currently the editor of my university's magazine The Scratch, which covers fashion, sport, entertainment, tech and all aspects of student life. I'm really interested in writing opinion pieces on governmental and social changes that affect young people, as well as students. I believe that more than ever young people have a voice on things that will change their life, and we should utilise this opportunity. After I graduate university, I really want to expand my skills and hit the ground running, and I feel like writing for NUS will help me take that step from student life to real world issues. I want to get out of my comfort zone and explore new fields within the industry and find out what other people's views are. In my spare time, I love playing video games and I'm currently trying to teach myself Japanese.