Democracy is about having your say and getting involved all year round.
Whether that’s through exercising your freedom of speech, getting involved in your local community volunteering, starting or signing a petition, protesting, campaigning, joining a youth parliament, lobbying, contacting your elected representative,finding ways large and small to take part in Civic and Civil Society.
1. Have conversations
Have conversatiions with family and friends and share this Story of Our UK Democracy that every citizen should know. Explain all of the above to other heroes.
Critical thought, debate, collaboration, challenge, protest, campaigning, reaching consensus (agreement) are all key to a good working democracy.
2. Volunteer and get involved in your local community
Democracy starts outside your front door and in your local community all year round. Get to know your neighbours. Find out about and get involved in volunteer groups and societies which represents the needs of your local community and things which you care about.
If one doesn’t already exist, start one!
What do you want to change or help fix? What’s group(s) already exist that are starting to make the change you want to see that you could support?
Volunteer to help with a local community garden, or school (like helping listening to kids read or becoming a school governor or helping with the PTA) or find out about your local health board, parish, community and/or Town Council.
Find out about Citizen’s Assemblies, Participatory Budgeting and local initiatives that will help you to raise your voice and be heard about what matters to your and your family and friends.
3. Find out who your Councillors, Members of Devolved Parliament (if you live in Scotland, Wales or NI) and your MP is. Get in touch with them about what you care about locally, nationally and internationally.
Find them here at Write To Them and They Work for You. Contact your elected representatives by letter, email, phone, social media and in person. They should all hold "surgeries" which just means a day when they hold face to face meetings with the people they represent. Some are drop ins and some are by appointment.
4. Protest, Campaign and Organise
Join with others to amplify your voice and, if you live in Wales, use the Future Generations Act in Wales to hold public bodies and elected representatives to account. Freedom to assemble (getting together with others in public) is your right. Know your rights. Get a copy of The Young Citizen’s Passport – a guide to those parts of the law most relevant to the everyday life of young people in England and Wales
5. Contact the media
From letters pages in your local and national papers, to contacting journalists in the press and recorded media (TV) to social media or simply writing a blog. It is your democratic right to “hold opinions and to receive and impart information and ideas without interference by public authority and regardless of frontiers.” Remember at all times the simple rules of our Freedom of Speech – that it comes with duties and responsibilities to protect the freedom and rights of others as well as ourselves and to not incite violence or hatred.
6. Start a petition
Start a petition and get it debated by a devolved such as (Welsh Parliament) or UK Parliament
7. Contribute towards a committee’s research.
They have to listen to you! Watch out for public consultations too and make sure you have your say about anything which matters to you.
8. Join a School Council, Youth Parliament or stand for public office
In primary and/or secondary school and/or a Youth Parliament from age 11-18 and when you are 18 or over stand for public office. Yes you!!! Become a Councillor or even stand to be elected as a Member of a devolved parliament or the UK parliament.
9. Register to Vote
Register to vote:
Check out The Electoral Commission for trusted and unbiased public information about your vote and all elections and also Where do I vote? Who can I vote for?
It never was. The different types of government, voting ages, voting systems have been created, shaped and changed by hero’s past and present...
They have been created and shaped and changed by all the Hero’s past and present and must continue to shift and change to meet the needs of future generations.
In Wales & Scotland you can register to vote at 14 & vote at 16 in Local and Welsh & Scottish Elections.
In England & Northern Ireland you can register to vote at 16 and vote at 18. Everyone currently has to 18 to vote in a General Election. For more information visit https://www.electoralcommission.org.uk/i-am-a/voter
To register to vote visit https://www.gov.uk/register-to-vote
Want to become a Democracy Box young co-creator and get paid to help people of all ages understand our UK democracy? Apply today.
Watch and listen to great content made by young people to help everyone understand The Story of Our UK democracy and how our democracy works and fits together.
Blasting the lid off the shame of not knowing this stuff.
The Democracy Box involves young people aged 16-26 being paid as co-creators to explore and develop new ways to explain the basics of our democracy for other young people, old people and everyone in between all year round and not just in the run up to an election.
#TDB #BeBoldBeBraveBeEducated #NoShameNoBlame
The Democracy Box aims to promote understanding of our UK democracy and achieve a shared basic level of understanding by the majority of the population.
The Democracy Box is about young people finding new creative ways to share The Story of our UK Democracy That Every Citizen Should Know In Seven Short Chapters so that all young people, old people and everyone in between can understand our UK democracy and can take part.
Our UK democracy needs all citizens to be informed, actively encouraged to get involved and to understand that it is their democratic right to challenge, question, protest, shape, critique, debate and influence our democracy all year round and not just at the ballot box.
The Democracy Box works with young people aged 16-26, born or based in Wales, as paid co-creators. It has developed four prototypes which seek to increase democratic participation and provide information about the UK’s democratic system and structures.