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Your work has made real inroads into tackling crime. As the mother of a teenager myself, I am pleased that you have challenged the negative perception of young people to better their life chances and also to value them as equally important citizens in our society. Work like this aligns very closely with my own agenda, and I have no doubt will be part of the solutions we all want for young people, families and communities in London, and indeed across the country. You have made a big difference and this knowledge can spread like the ripple effect of the pebble in the pond to making other communities safer and with better outcomes for young people.

—Baroness Newlove, 2011

About the 99% Campaign

What is the 99% campaign?

The 99% Campaign is a youth-led initiative and digital participation programme aiming to make society more inclusive, fair and responsive to young people’s views and realities. It achieves its mission by giving direct voice to the most marginalised young people and by dispelling negative stereotypes.

What are the aims of the 99% Campaign?
  1.  “Disadvantage thinking” about young people is addressed and positive stories are promoted.
  2.  Discrimination, negative perceptions and stereotypes about young people are tackled within  society, political institutions and service providers.
  3.  New youth opportunities are created while current opportunities are highlighted and enhanced.
  4. 99% Campaigners receive high quality volunteering and internship opportunities, and through training, mentoring, accreditation and support they become role models and leaders within their communities.
Target audiences
  • All adults

Objectives: To increase awareness; help reassess their views of young people; tackle perceptions; bridge the generation gap; and dispel stereotypes

How? Through the promotion of positive stories; by working with the media; by holding events, and producing publications/ posters.

  • Service Providers & Political institutions

Objectives: To help change organisational culture regarding engagement and inclusion of young people in their internal and external policy and service delivery

How? Through the 99% pledge; youth-led online and face to face training,  Campaigning.

Who is driving the 99% campaign?

Young people including the 1%!

Objective: To give them a chance; inspire them; help them feel they are given more respect; act as “one-stop-shop” for information on civic engagement activities; reward and make them employable

How? Using online and face to face training content we will enable hundreds of young people to gain skills in research and campaigning, presenting their own experiences and those of further thousands of their peers to key public figures via a combination of media.

Ultimate goal: To bring change from the bottom up!

The 99% Campaign History

2010

In April 2010, the IARS International Institute was entrusted the 99% initiative and has put together a Core Partners Group and a list of Supporters and Sponsors to enable the young people involved to run and manage it. The 99% Campaign was launched in 2009 by the London Serious Youth Violence Board (LSYVB). The LSYVB itself was set up by the London Community Safety Partnership (LCSP) following a serious youth violence summit hosted by London Councils in November 2008. All of this was in the wake of the spate of 27 teenage murders in London in 2007, which led to what some have called “a moral panic” about serious youth violence. It can be easy to confuse the many different issues that were at play and/or became politically cogent during that time. It is difficult to pick between: party-political rhetoric – which has a tendency to focus on past failures and special ‘new’ ideas and policies; media headlines – which have a tendency to sensationalize and simplify events without providing proper context; government recommendations – which are often vague and jargon-filled; and independent recommendations – which we usually only hear through the mouths of politicians or reporters. Following a Youth Summit and the Young Londoners’ Manifesto as well as ongoing involvement of young Londoners through IARS Youth Advisory Board for the LSYVB, the Board posited the following two recommendations for action at a pan-London level:

  • Recommendation twelve: Involving young people in the decision-making process. Local and regional partners should continue to find ways to promote the voice of young people as sustainable solutions to serious youth violence are unlikely to emerge unless they reflect the priorities, energy and commitment of local communities, and in particular the voice of the young people who live in those communities.

Based on the experience of the London Serious Youth Violence Board and its work with young people, it is recommended that statutory and non-statutory organisations and agencies should commit themselves to establishing, and demonstrating, clearly identifiable and accessible means for young people to directly feedback and influence on issues and decision making that impact on them.

  • Recommendation thirteen: Public perceptions and young people. All partners need to understand that negative stereotyping; in the media in particular, can have a damaging effect on public perceptions but also on young people themselves, so far as limiting aspirations and life chances are concerned. All partners should ensure they promote a proportionate approach, whilst as the same time acknowledging that the vast majority of young people in London contribute actively and constructively to their schools and local communities.There should be further recognition of the importance of role models, especially those young people who have come from the same areas and backgrounds and have faced and overcome similar challenges to other young people at risk of serious youth violence. Recommendations taken from the London Serious Youth Violence Board Final Report (2011).

Based on these recommendations the 99% Campaign is established as the Voice of young people that reaches both public and policy – makers in order to dispel stereotypes as well as to shape the policies that aim to respond to their problems.

2012

In 2012 the 99% Campaign receives funding by the Nominet Trust to further expand its activities in the digital sphere. It continues to give voice to the most marginalised young people and dispel stereotypes. Using online training content, the project enables hundreds of young people  to gain skills in research and campaigning, presenting their own experiences and those of further thousands of their peers to key public figures via a combination of media. The project brings together young people from across the UK together online to share and debate ideas and opinions.

Get involved
  • Support us to promote positive image of young people. Share with us your positive stories, views, opinions on issues that affect you and become active part of their solutions. Submit your content at 99percentcampaign@iars.org.uk.
  • Sign in the 99% Campaign pledge and support young people who are making a real difference in their diverse community.
  • Sign up for our FREE face to face training sessions and learn how to strengthen your voice online or simply get your inspiration from our online e-tools . To find out more and join our free sessions please email 99percentcampaign@iars.org.uk
  • Sign up for our newsletter and receive regular updates of our work.

Join the editorial team by emailing us at 99percentcampaign@iars.org.uk