Councillor’s plea to ‘step up’ and prevent closure of charity which gives  voice to Milton Keynes’ youth

She is writing to Government following announcement by British Youth Council
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A Milton Keynes councillor is urging the Government to ‘step up’ and prevent the closure of the British Youth Council, a charity which gives a voice to Milton Keynes’ youth.

The British Youth Council (BYC) announced it was to close after more than 75 years, following ongoing financial challenges, resulting in insolvency.

The BYC helps to empower young people aged 25 and under to influence decisions and supports them in getting involved in their communities and democracy on a local to international level.

Councillor Shanika MahendranCouncillor Shanika Mahendran
Councillor Shanika Mahendran

In Milton Keynes, the recent BYC ‘Make Your Mark’ ballot attracted more than 10,000 responses, demonstrating the benefit of the charity, which has supported Members of Youth Parliament, Deputy Members of Youth Parliament, Youth Council and former Youth Cabinet in the city.

Councillor Shanika Mahendran is now urging the Government to intervene and prevent its closure, penning a letter to MP Stuart Andrew.

Cllr Mahendran, Cabinet Member with responsibility for Engaging Young People, said: “Young people need to feel empowered to engage with democracy and issues that impact them - their voices are just as important as any other, and on some issues, significantly more insightful than many of the usual voices we hear in politics.”

The BYC is a national charity, run by young people to represent the views of young people to government and decision-makers at a local, national, European and international level. It is partly funded by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport and UK Parliament.

The charity announced its closure on March 21.