National Youth Forum Big Meet Up At Great Ormond Street Hospital

Written with help from the youth team, Hospital Playworker, Louise Trower  wanted to say a huge thanks for the charity’s support as without Derby Hospitals Charity they wouldn’t have been able to attend the event. Read the teams blog below!


On Saturday 14th October 2017, 4 young people from The Royal Derby Hospital’s Youth Forum had to give up their weekend lie in. All was good though as it was for an excellent cause – the first ever Youth Forum Big Meet up at the world renowned Great Ormond Street Hospital for Sick children.

After a good train journey we made it to venue without getting lost! We were greeted by some amazing young people from GOSH youth Forum who made us feel very welcome and set us up with lanyards and a plan for the day, direction etc and a very much needed drink and snack.

First up was an introduction to the day from Faiza, young person and chair of the Hospital’s Youth Forum and also Juliette, Chief Nurse. This was followed by a short speech and questions and answer Session with The Last leg and Paralympic presenter, and more importantly ex Great Ormond Street Patient, Alex Brooker. Plenty of laughs were had but also Alex put great importance on how important it is to listen to the voices of young people. This was followed by a short presentation by the young people from Great Ormond Street Hospital’s own Youth Forum, talking about what they did, why they got involved and their achievements so far.

After Lunch we split into groups to work on different topics relating to young people and youth forums. We particularly enjoyed the “Share and steal” workshops as it was a chance to work alongside young people from hospitals all over the country, and learn from their experiences and share our own as well and some of us were lucky enough to go on a tour on the Hospital which was amazing, we were particularly impressed with the outside spaces and the beautiful art work (which included art by children and young people)

Last of all we voted on what was most important to us as young people in terms of our health care. The options (which were chosen by young people all over the country prior to the event) were:

Make Our Health Care Human

Everyday mental wellbeing is everyone’s business

Dedicated Adolescent space

Communication – Two way conversation amongst equals

(Winners are in bold)


After a long but worthwhile day we decided we deserved a McDonalds and then it was time to catch the train home where we discussed what we wanted to do in the future. Top of our list were:

Better Communication via Social media (Our own twitter account and a youth service Facebook page where we could advertise our Youth Forum amongst other events organised by the Hospital Youth service) We feel this is important as this is how young people communicate and we can make links with Youth Forums all over the country while advertising what we do.

Our own Youth Forum Logo – For use on letters, emails, social media and around the hospital, we also like to use this on our own T-shirts which we would like to design.

Next Years Event – We were so inspired by this event that would like to hold next year’s Youth Forum big meet up in partnership with QMC, Nottingham (It is their youth service 20th anniversary next year) so that we can make it twice as big and twice as better!

A big thank you to the Royal Derby Hospital Charity for supporting our work with the Youth Forum and the wider Youth Service. We would not have been able to attend without your donation.

Also we cannot forget the wonderful Young people from Great Ormond street who put on a great event; they did Youth Forums up and down the country proud!

Former GOSH patient Alex Brooker said:

“It’s wonderful to be back at GOSH, and to be invited to take part in the first ever collective Big Youth Forum Meet Up. I know first-hand how important it is to be listened to, I’m glad that this Forum will give the young people a platform to address some of the issues they are facing in hospitals today.”

Faiza Yasin, Chair of the GOSH Young People’s Forum, said:

“Many of us are living with a long-term condition, and need a lifetime of follow-up care. We are the living examples of the issues being faced in healthcare every single day, and we deserve to be listened to. I want to help shape change, and be the voice for children and young people in healthcare.”

Harry Tanser age 17 from Royal Derby Hospital Youth Forum, said:

“Young People represent a large demographic of people that use hospitals for their care. It is important for their experience to be good. Having Youth Forums enables change that improves patient experience and the meeting at GOSH on Saturday will pull lots of good ideas together to improve services that can be shared across the country.”

Louise Melbourne, Senior Youth Worker at the Royal Derby Hospital said: 

“Youth Forums are a powerful way to ensure that the views and opinions of young people are heard and acted upon. It’s so Inspiring and exciting to see so many young people so enthusiastic and passionate about improving services for others, throughout the NHS.”

Thanks for reading!

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