Last week the Imagineers were invited to take part in a discovery session with UNICEF and Aberdeen City Council. There were other young people there too, from the Youth Council and Torry Squad.
As a group we thought of really good things about Aberdeen that make us proud to grow up here, like living beside the beach and our families. We also talked about challenges there are in Aberdeen, like not having space in the city centre for children to play.
After that we thought about things that we want adults to know, do and say to help make Aberdeen a child friendly city. We think that adults should pay attention to their kids more than electronic devices and make sure that children are safe on the internet. It’s also important that adults are good role models and teach children about their rights.
We also think that there aren’t enough fun things for older children to do in Aberdeen. Like in doctors waiting rooms there are only toys for younger children. We would like there to be an xbox or art things to do.
Last week the Imagineers were at Shmu’s recording studio recording audio to play at our ‘What Kind of Aberdeen?’ workshop. We are telling the story of a great journey to a city where children are healthy, happy and safe.
We enjoyed speaking out in the recording booth and sharing the idea of human dignity. It was lots of fun and we had never done anything like it before.
We can’t wait to hear the finished piece at our the first ‘What Kind of Aberdeen?’ workshop at His Majesty’s theatre!
Later this month the Imagineers will have the first of their ‘What Kind of Aberdeen?’ workshops. These workshops are with adults who want to learn about of the idea of human dignity and children’s human rights.
We have been getting ready and working on our Imagineer passports. Our passport is a place where we can write about, and give examples of some of the key things we think about as Imagineers: Human dignity, trust, empathy and kindness.
To us human dignity is:
‘Treating other people who are different with respect as well’
‘Everybody is different because you don’t need to be the same’
‘Showing people love’
‘Kids must be able to trust adults so that they feel safe’
‘Telling the truth’
‘If you trust someone you feel good and nice but if you cant trust someone you might feel sad and annoyed’
‘Try and look at every perspective’
‘Think before you say something you wouldn’t like to be said to you’
‘You can understand if someone makes a mistake’
‘Listening to kids and helping them if they need it’
‘Being caring, thoughtful and sharing’
‘Kindness means you think about other peoples feelings’
November had been a busy month for our Imagineers, beginning with our National Sitting (please see previous blog post for a full run down of the day) and ending with a visit to the Aberdeen Youth Council and beginning preparations for our 2018 programme.
The Aberdeen Youth Council was exciting because it was a chance to see that other young people trying to make a difference in Aberdeen.
“The Youth Council was kinda formal but it was cool too” said Miriam and Demi.
We also began to think about next year, the Year of Children and Young People, and how that is going to look. We created passports as way of looking at key aspects of being a Member of Children’s Parliament. These included human dignity, empathy kindness and trust.
Here is a snapshot of some of the ideas we came up with.
“Human dignity is when someone shares with you” said Tijana.
“It is difficult to be kind to people when you are cool” said Jamie.
“Trust is when you think you can count on your friend to help you” said Ben.
“Empathy is when you help people’s I show empathy to people when I talk to them” said Shannon.
To mark Universal Children’s Day and Children’s Parliament’s 21st birthday, children and adults travelled from all across Scotland to 2017’s National Sitting in Edinburgh to discuss the future of Scotland and how it can be a safer, healthier and happier place for children and families to live and grow. Imagineers from Bramble Brae, Manor Park, Riverbank and Tullos primary schools journeyed on the train from Aberdeen to take part.
“Today has been really fun because this is my first time ever going on a train. My favourite part of the day was getting a birthday cupcake – it gave me a green tongue!” said Leo.
“We got cool Imagineer t-shirts and we worked with adults, talking about how children feel. We made viking boats and we wrote what’s important for us on cardboard stones. We put these on the lighthouse. We exchanged paper lanterns with the adults and wrote a wish for each other. It was fun and exciting. I met the rest of the people in Children’s Parliament. The adult I talked to was Theresa. She was wonderful” said Croydon.
At the National Sitting we met these adults: Juliet, Ben, Katie, Irene from Brazil, Amber, Gayle, Mr Swinney, Barbara, Susan, Amanda and Theresa.
“I talked to the adults about my siblings, my dog and children’s rights. We built boats together” said Deacon.
“I talked about school and work. Talking to the adults was my favourite part of the day” said Ralfs.
“I talked to adults about how they can listen to children and how to make Scotland better. My favourite part of the day was being in Edinburgh because I felt like I was in Harry Potter” said Sammy.
“What we’ve spoken about this afternoon is at the heart of making Scotland the best place to grow up!” said Deputy First Minister John Swinney. We agree at Children’s Parliament!
A ‘defender’ is a term used to describe people who promote or protect human rights. They can be identified by what they do and the actions they take. At their November meet-up, the Imagineers created their own Children’s Rights Defenders.
‘We went to Northfield Academy and we made an adult figure who fights for our rights.’
“This is a children’s rights defender. She’s wearing two dots and they are about the right to food and drink and the right to have a house and safety. We chose a girl because we feel like girls need a lot more help with their rights than boys do.”
“This is the love saviour- he’s called that because he has his heart here and because he loves saving children! The love saviour has a magic broomstick that he flew on to save the children from their house.”
“Our defender defends the rights to have a home and school! This one is all different colours to show that all races are involved.”
Aberdeen Tobacco-free Alliance held a smoke-free generation event in September at Robert Gordon University to discuss “A TOBACCO-FREE FUTURE BY 2034 – HOW CAN WE ACHIEVE IT?” The Imagineers contributed their ideas for how to stop adults smoking and for how to stop young people from starting to smoke. This poster shows what they came up with: