Hundreds of young people to voice their views as part of new national scheme
Hundreds of students from across Wales will get a taste of what its like to participate in the democratic process and try and provide answers to some of the big issues that affect their lives as part of a joint scheme between S4C, the National Assembly and ITV Cymru Wales’ Hacio programme.
The aim is to give young people the opportunity to raise their voices and to offer their own suggestions on how to solve problem they face in their everyday lives.
The discussion and debating events, labelled Hacio’n Holi (Hacio Asks) will be held in 8 schools across Wales over the next two weeks. Between 70 and 100 people will take part in the school sessions – before groups from each school get the opportunity to make their mark in the National Assembly.
On the 20 November 6 representatives from each school will take part in the big Hacio’n Holi debate on the floor of Siambr Hywel at the National.
Every session will be chaired by one of Hacio’s presenters, Catrin Haf Jones – who is more than used to dealing on air with big issues affecting the younger generations. The issues under discussion during the tour have been chosen by students themselves. The subjects are:
• Cyber bullying and social media
• Dealing with the pressure of exams and job hunting
• The Welsh language
During the final debate at the National Assembly, two of those subjects will be discussed along with one additional topic – how can young people’s voices get heard in modern Wales?
Welcoming the scheme which is being organised jointly by S4C, the National Assembly and ITV Cymru Wales’ Hacio programme, the Presiding Officer of the National Assembly, Rosemary Butler AM said:
“It is great for the National Assembly for Wales to be able to support S4C and ITV Wales in this venture.
“Young people are the future of Wales, which is why we are currently running a nationwide youth consultation ‘Your Assembly – your say, your way’ about how the National Assembly for Wales should engage with young people.
“We want the young people to tell us what matters to them, what they expect from us and what we can do to make sure their voices are heard
“We launched a new website, www.yourassembly.org, in September to encourage young people to tell the Assembly what they care about and how they want to get involved.
“And this debate offers another chance to promote this campaign and to get young people discussing the issues that matter to them.”
S4C’s Director of Communications, Marketing and Partnerships, Garffild Lloyd Lewis said:
“Discussing the big issues of the day and trying to find answers to problems are the very essence of our democratic institutions. But are issues which are important to young people discussed? Is the voice of our young people heard? Well, this is an opportunity for our young people to make that happen for themselves.
“It’s a pleasure to be able to work alongside the National Assembly and ITV Cymru Wales to ensure that Hacio’n Holi is going ahead, and that we achieve something of real value - that is to give our young people a voice and raise awareness of the way our democratic institutions work.”
ITV Cymru Wales’ Editor of Welsh Language Programmes Geraint Evans said:
“Hacio is one of the few programmes on television that gives young people the opportunity to air their views about politics and current affairs. It's our job to investigate the issues that influence their lives and to put their views to those in power.
“I hope this event will enable us to get closer to our audience and to understand what really matters to them. I'm sure we'll see a lively debate and that this will enable us to discover the next generation of contributors and journalists.”
Hacio’n Holi sessions will be held in the following schools:
Ysgol Bro Ddyfi, Machynlleth 15 October
Ysgol Maes y Gwendraeth, Cefneithin 16 October
Ysgol Dyffryn Aman, Amanford 17 October
Ysgol Gyfun Gymraeg Llangynwyd, Maesteg 18 October
Ysgol Dyffryn Conwy , Llanrwst 21 October
Ysgol David Hughes, Menai Bridge 22 October
Ysgol Maes Garmon, Mold 23 October
Ysgol Bro Pedr, Lampeter 24 October