A network that was set up to help young people in Suffolk have a voice, has a new logo thanks to a competition that was created by Suffolk County Council.
The initiative is called the 'SEND YPN' (Young People's Network) and has been created to make sure that children and young people with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) have a voice - in order to improve and monitor services within the council.
The network is for those aged between 13 and 25 was set up in 2017. Its purpose is to reach out to Suffolk's SEND community and find out what they want and need from local services.
To do this, the Engagement Hub along with the Quality Assurance and Practice Development Team, wrote to community groups, schools and colleges and discovered that local colleges in particular were a great way of engaging with young people.
As a way of promoting the SEND YPN to others, the team decided to ask colleges across the county to design a logo for the network and the winner of this competition was 17-year-old Kimberly Nightingale who is a student from One.
A beaming Kimberley, said, "My design was inspired by pictures of my family and I was happy and excited to win – it was a great moment. I felt like bursting into song."
Susie Tulk a co-production advisor with the Engagement Hub at SCC. said, "The network is growing and we felt it needed a logo. 17 young people (all One students) entered the competition and we had a panel who chose the winner. When we talk to the YPN, they all have an interest in similar local services involving friends, hobbies, pets, sports and travel.
"As a council, we want to be able to listen to young people and support them as much as we can to have a voice in shaping services. Now the YPN has a logo, it has more of an identity and we hope that it continues to grow from strength to strength."
Andy Culham is a foundation learning teacher at One. He said, "The group was excited to be part of this competition. They enjoy being part of anything that has a positive wider impact on the community."