Participation is … Part 4

This is the fourth of 5 tips or suggestions on how to make children and young people’s participation work. Check out parts 1, 2 and 3  for more details.

1. It is not a wish list

2. Always give feedback

3. Make it accessible


There are lots of models of participation, the most popular and widely used is Harts Ladder. ( ) Harts Ladder gives you 7/8 levels to work from progressing from manipulation and tokenism (which are NOT participation) to child lead activities. personally, i don’t like the model. It suggests that children need to be leading an activity; coming up with all the ideas for it to be great participation and encourages people to aim for the top. This isn’t strictly the case. I prefer to use models which give you TYPES of participation not levels.  Not all children have the confidence, skills, knowledge, inclination to lead on a project. this doesn’t mean you have failed to do great participation. it might be that keeping a child informed of the process is as much as they want or you can do within the confines of your role. This is still participation.

Final installment to follow


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