Kids in Museums launches new programme to increase youth leadership in the heritage sector

Kids in Museums is proud to launch a new programme supporting heritage organisations to recruit young people to their boards.

Since 2018, we have worked with the Kids in Museums Youth Panel, a group of young people aged 16 to 25 who support our programmes and develop their own projects.

Last year, the Youth Panel planned and delivered their own unique event to give young people a platform to say want they want to see from museums and heritage sites. The Future is Now: Museum Youth Summit was held on Friday 6 October 2023 at Thinktank, Birmingham Science Museum, and included inspiring speakers from UK museums, creative activities and thoughtful panel and open floor discussions. We then circulated these panel questions further to other museum youth groups and young people until the end of the year.

Now, the Youth Panel is holding two free online sessions to share their findings. There will be one sharing session for museum staff and one networking session for young people aged 16-30. Booking is now open:

One of the key findings from the event and subsequent survey was that participants wanted to see more young people in leadership roles in the heritage sector. To this end, we are launching a new, free programme, Engaging your first Young Trustees, in partnership with Upstart Projects, a national charity that champions youth voice and leadership.

We have had two Young Trustees on the Kids in Museums Board since 2018, bringing a valuable new perspective and widening our network. Arts Council England data about regularly funded cultural organisations from 2020-21 shows that 91% of Trustees were aged over 34 and around half, over 50. Similarly, data from the Arts Council of Wales shows that only 3.7% of board members at their funded organisations are younger people.

We want to help change this to bring new perspectives to decision making and ensure the needs of young people as visitors and staff members are represented in museums’ future planning.

Our new training and networking programme is for Trustees and staff from museums, galleries and heritage organisations who are interested in appointing young people aged 18-30 to their boards and for young people interested in becoming museum Trustees.

The programme will support museums to create an inclusive board culture and develop an accessible recruitment process to engage young people as Young Trustees. Once the recruitment process is complete, we will support the new Young Trustees through their first six months in post, as well as provide ongoing support to Trustees to embed inclusive working among their board members.

There are six free places available to museums in England and six free places available to museums in Wales.

To find out more and get involved, please visit our Engaging your first Young Trustees web page and complete the application form by Thursday 29 February, 5pm.

If you have any questions about the programme, please get in touch: [email protected]


Kids in Museums

Kids in Museums

We work with museums, heritage sites and cultural organisations across the UK to make them great places for children, young people and families

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