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Participation for children and young people

What is Participation?

"Participation is the process by which children and young people influence decision-making, which brings about change in them, others, their services and their communities"

Young People Say:

"Participation is listening"

"Participation is getting everyone involved"

"It's getting young people's opinions about what they want and need"

"It's being part of a team"

"It's to make a difference"

"It's our rights"

Why is Participation Important?

A scroll with the word "rights" written on

It's every child's right

The United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC) says all children have the right to have their say in matters that affect them.

Houses of Parliament

It's the law

The Children's Acts, Children and Families Act and SEN Code of Practice (and more!) all say children and young people must have a say.

a hand showing a "thumbs up"

To improve services

Listening to and involving children and young people who use services leads to the design and development of better, more relevant services.

a voting ballot box

To help democracy and community

Children and young people learn about democracy and involvement and are more likely to become active members of their community.

two children

To keep children safe

It is vital that children and young people have a voice and are encouraged to speak out.  Listening to children helps keep them safe.

a young person with their hand up and a speech bubble with a question mark

To improve children's skills

Children and young people learn new skills around communication, negotiation, decision-making and independence.

 A head showing a smiling face with an arrow pointing up beside it

To empower and enhance self-esteem

Children and young people become more confident.  They feel proud of themselves, their involvement and their achievements.

 a happy face

To have fun!


Young People Say:

"Participation is important because it brings everyone closer"

"Without participation, nothing will change"

"It's about everyone getting involved"

"It's about everyone being equal"

"It's like sustainability - we can make a difference that's useful for us now, and useful for other children in the future"

"So children and young people are in control and it's not others making decisions for them"

Find out more about the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child

How are children and young people in Kingston and Richmond participating?

We have a Participation Team for children and young people who have special educational needs and/or disability. 

Young people are involved in lots of ways.  

Why should children and young people get involved in participation?

easy read sheet explaining  why it is important for children and young people to be involved

Young People Say:

"It feels like you're doing a good cause"

"It's so professionals and services can improve"

"(Our monthly meetings) have good community vibes and banter!"

"It's fun!"

"You will get your opinions heard"

"We learn that being different is not a bad thing"

​"(It's) being part of a team"

Participation is for everybody - if you would you like to get involved please contact us

SEND Participation - request to get young people involved if you are a professional 

This form is exclusively for professionals within Achieving for Children, Kingston, and Richmond councils who wish to involve children and young people with Special Education Needs and Disabilities (SEND) in sharing their opinions, providing consultations, participating in Recruits Crew panels, attending events, meetings, or projects.

To engage these remarkable young minds, please complete our online request form.

By sharing detailed information, our SEND Participation Lead can tailor engaging participation projects, monitor involvement levels, assess impact, and ensure meaningful participation opportunities.

Questions or unsure if this form applies to you? Reach out to us at [email protected].


SEND Participation - get involved if you are a child or young person

We would love to hear from you if:

  • You are a child or young person (under 25 years) and you want to get involved in our projects or share your views
  • You know a child or young person who wants to get involved in our projects or share their views
  • You are an adult who would like to talk to us about how to listen to and involve children and young people 

Please contact us using the 'I want to get involved' form at the bottom of this page or directly at:

The Moor Lane Centre
Moor Lane

Email:     [email protected]

I want to get involved!

Please be assured that any data that you send through this form is encrypted before transmission across the internet and will be accessed by our admin team using a secure system