Young Person’s Award

CYA Saturdays

#CYASaturdays @covactivists @grapevinecandw

By reducing isolation for young people in Coventry, CYA have grown in confidence, skills, relationships and are now leaders within their own communities.

The Campaign

CYA – a group of disabled and non-disabled young people came together as they all wanted to see a change in their worlds and that of other young disabled people.

Their first listening campaign, ‘CYA on the sofa’, saw them run an “ideas factory” with their local community and work with local arts organisations to create a CYA ‘Sofa Safari’ that saw their sofa propelled around the city centre on bikes and share a performance that roused curiosity and awareness of the isolation young disabled people are facing.

awards

CYA has been mine and the whole group’s emotional safety net. What may look like challenges to others for us gives us creative ideas and so when you put all of these things together it creates something beautiful.”

awards

CYA has been mine and the whole group’s emotional safety net. What may look like challenges to others for us gives us creative ideas and so when you put all of these things together it creates something beautiful.”

The Change

From these events evolved four initiatives that tackle the fact that 1 in 3 disabled young people spend less than an hour outside on a Saturday

These included an inclusive gig nights designed, planned and run by young people,  a ‘Pokemon For All’ club, a monthly pub night out that created a community of young people working with local businesses to be more inclusive and ensure that everyone can enjoy a night out, and a vlog that shares CYA’s work while bringing issues to light and challenging the public to think differently.

By reducing isolation for young people in Coventry, CYA have grown in confidence, skills, relationships and are now leaders within their own communities.

 

The Future

Thinking creatively to overcome barriers is what CYA do best, so during lockdown, they have thrown themselves into their latest campaign CYA on your sofa. The CYA sofa has always been a place for conversations and they didn’t want isolation to stop those conversations.

Each week they invite different guests to sit on their sofa, share their story and work together on actions that will continue to bring around change for many disabled people long after restrictions are lifted. CYA have been joined on the virtual sofa by among others Sally Phillips, actress and her son Ollie who has Down’s Syndrome, Jess Thom from Tourettes Hero, and fellow activist Nusrit Shaheen. Each conversation is recorded and edited by the CYA team and uploaded weekly on to the CYA on Your Sofa youtube channel.

Who else was involved?

Act Build Change – Stephanie Leanord; The Tin Music and Arts; Open Theatre Company; Imagineer Productions