- Want to discuss topics young people care about?
- Need something that works with unchurched young people?
- Would love to create a safe space for your group to talk?
A new resource has appeared on Energize, our youth work resources platform, that is designed to help youth workers host discussions that will help young people tackle difficult topics. We did a Q and A session with Resources Editor Laura Dutton, who has been involved with developing the sessions from the start.
What is Let’s Talk?
Let’s Talk is a new resource equipping Leaders to host meaningful conversations with young people, tackling sometimes difficult topics. There are two parts to Let’s Talk – the first is the Leader’s Training which comes in the form of seven articles packed with tips, videos and activities for you and your leaders to explore together. The second part is the Discussion Starter Sheets which take a topic and give helpful prompts for hosting a discussion with young people.
What inspired the need for Let’s Talk?
There were a few motivations behind Let’s Talk – we were aware of a gap in resources for unchurched young people that were more open-ended and were useful whether you had 10 minutes with your group, or 90. We also felt that leaders would value being equipped to tackle tough topics with young people, those topics that are controversial or cannot be ‘answered’ easily. We wanted to give leaders the confidence to facilitate a discussion that may not land any answers but will show young people that their voice counts.
Have you ever hosted a discussion between young people? How did it go?
If discussion groups with young people have taught me anything, it’s to expect the unexpected! Some groups need encouragement to speak up, and I’ve tried out many creative ways to get young people talking (some more successful than others!). I’ve also been in situations where young people cannot say enough about a topic, and I’ve had to really focus to keep up with them!
How will Let’s Talk benefit Leaders hosting discussions? What is included?
When we started developing the resource, we soon realised that it wasn’t just the session content that would be useful for a Leader. From our experience hosting discussions, we know how useful it is to be equipped for the unexpected – for example, what do we do when young people take the conversation on an unhelpful tangent? What happens when young people disagree? How do we ‘get out of the way’ and become a facilitator rather than the focus?
That’s why Let’s Talk includes 7 Training Articles for Leaders, as well as Discussion Starter Sheets for the actual discussions with young people.
What kind of topics are available through Let’s Talk?
For discussions that are vibrant and thought-provoking, the topics need to be ones that young people really care about and will want to contribute their voices to. The first topic available is “Truth” – in a world with so much accessible information (and misinformation), we felt this was an important one to explore!