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Find out about how you can get involved and participate in Brook’s work, and in doing so gain knowledge, skills and experience.
Information for parents and carers
Join one of our Groups and be involved in decisions that could affect you and those around you and create positive change.
Read about joining a group in Welsh
Participation means giving people the opportunity to get involved in decisions that could affect them. Children and young people have this guaranteed to them through Article 12 of the United Nations Convention on the Right’s of the Child (UNCRC).
Brook is committed to involving children, young people, and adults at every level in the organisation and ensuring that their experiences and voices inform our work.
Participating with Brook involves taking part in opportunities where you can have your voice heard, be actively involved in decision making, and create measurable and positive change in Brook services through co-design.
We have made a commitment to working with young people for the years ahead and are proud to have signed the iwill #PowerOfYouth Charter.
Some examples of how getting involved with our participation work can benefit you are:
There are different ways you can get involved in participation at Brook, ranging in commitment and time level
Ad hoc opportunities to get involved with Brook’s work. Usually involves surveys or focus groups to provide feedback on Brook’s services and new developments that help fight stigma around sexual health and wellbeing.
A recent example was a survey about our online dating webpages which have been amended using people’s feedback.
Anyone can be involved in ad hoc opportunities. There’s no time commitment so it’s a great option if you want to volunteer with Brook but don’t have much free time.
Every year Brook sets a promise to work with three new participation groups to hear from local communities and to improve Brook services at a local level. These groups help us review our services, offer us new ideas and ways to embed local voices in what we do.
In 2022, we worked with young people in the Wirral and Manchester in local participation groups as well as a group with professionals from across England.
The National forums help Brook to look at sexual health and wellbeing at a national level, hearing voices from across the UK.
We have four national Participation Forums:
National groups help us to look at sexual health and wellbeing at a national level, hearing voices from across the UK.
We aren’t currently recruiting for the Participation Forums. Recruitment will begin early 2024.
Our Participation Committee are democratically elected by their peers in each National Participation Forum to feedback about participation and bring forward new ideas to Brook’s Board of Trustees [link].
Meet the current participation committee
Our Participation Committee are democratically elected by their peers in each National Participation Advisory Group to feedback about participation and bring forward new ideas to Brook’s Board of Trustees.
Participation Committee Member and Representative of 16-19s Advisory Group
Poppy is 19, from Hertfordshire and currently studying law at Cardiff University. Poppy has a keen interest in the laws around sex and relationships, and hopes to one day work as a negligence Barrister, specialising in gaining compensation for victims of historic sex crimes.
Poppy been a Brook Advisory Group member since December 2021, and within this time has supported the Group in lots of ways including the co-design of the Your Best Friend campaign
Participation Committee Member and Representative of 20-24s Advisory Group
Kanika is 23 and lives in Edinburgh, working for the Scottish Government. Since January 2022, Kanika has volunteered with Brook as a member of the 20-24 National Participation Advisory Group. In this time, Kanika has been involved in the Group is so many different ways, including appearing on Ruby Rare’s BBC Radio documentary ‘The Virtual World of Sex Education‘, attended a focus group with the RCPCH about telemedicine abortion services and created several videos for Brook’s social media channels.
Committee Member and Representative of 25+ Advisory Group
Scarlett is based in south London, and is a multi-disciplinary creative who has fostered partnerships with a variety of reputable brands, institutions and educational establishments.
Since March 2022, Scarlett has been a very active member on the Brook adults’ Advisory Group. For example, Scarlett has supported the successful development of an application for Brook to deliver training to businesses to help them support employees affected by menopause, and has taken part in many workshops including policy workshops around parents/carers engagement in RSE.
Kelly is a qualified youth worker who has been working with children and young people for over 20 years in variety of roles whilst championing their rights as outlined in the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child. As the Head of Participation for Brook, Kelly has strategic responsibility for how Brook engages, listens, and provides opportunities for young people and adults to influence and shape our services across the UK.
Over the last 13 years Sarah has worked with young people across the UK, including 3 years working and volunteering in Malawi, Africa. Over the last 3 years Sarah has coordinated Brook’s participation work, overseeing the 40-50 national group members.
As Participation Manager Sarah feels that participation is an essential part to any person-centred organisation. Sarah will manage participation to ensure that people’s views and lived experiences are embedded into Brook’s work, to improve Brook’s services, and to know it is what people want and need.
Over the past 20 years Julie-Anne has worked with young people and adults supporting them in a variety of ways to meet their individual needs. Since 2015 she has worked for Brook facilitating education for young people and training for parents, carers and professionals.
In 2022 Julie-Anne joined the participation team and has a real passion for ensuring a wide, diverse range of people’s voices are heard and their opinions are truly listened to.
Along with participation Julie-Anne will also be taking on Brook’s new role as Volunteer coordinator. Julie-Anne has worked with and managed volunteers at Brook since 2015. She sees the fundamental benefits of volunteering for the volunteers, Brook and wider community.
Brook regularly works with external organsiations including Universities and charities to support them to co-design their services or to explore their research objective.
Some of our recent and current partners who Brook has worked with within participatory research and co-design projects include: University of Birmingham, Oxford Brookes, Department for Education, Safe Lives, Time to Raise it and the Eve Appeal.
If you’re a professional and are interested in collaborating with Brook around participation opportunities for children and young people, or adults, please contact the Participation Team.
Haven’t found what you’re looking for in our current vacancies? Use this form to tell us how you’d like to volunteer at Brook and we’ll get back to you