Best practice from ÖrebroBostäder (ÖBO), Sweden.
Young people can provide important inputs to improve a neighbourhood and community life. ÖrebroBostäder (ÖBO) created a meaningful opportunity for young people to share their ideas through the Vivalla Youth Parliament.
The Vivalla neighbourhood includes many young people and children. In collaboration with Västerporten, the Youth Parliament welcomes all young people from the area aged sixteen and over. Each meeting involves around thirty to one hundred participants and lasts for about ninety minutes.
What helped to make the Youth Parliament a success?
One of the key challenges was ensuring that young people felt that the Parliament was relevant and worth spending their free time on. It was important to encourage new ideas but also to manage expectations and be open about what ÖBO could deliver on. It was also key to create a positive environment within the Parliament itself – a VIP feeling! ÖBO offered food and snacks to the young people taking part, organised round table discussions, and created competitions to make the experience fun.
The Youth Parliament has fed into decision-making in Vivalla, including on safety issues and the design of recreational spaces.
What have been the outcomes of the Youth Parliament so far?
The Youth Parliament has provided recommendations on several key issues in Vivalla. The Parliament contributed to the design of the multi-arena in the neighbourhood. This created opportunities for people to get together, practice sports and activities, and strengthen community feeling. Another theme was security: the Parliament provided feedback on areas that feel unsafe. Volunteers identified zones where lighting needed to be added or adapted to ensure safety.
Thanks to the Youth Parliament, ÖBO has received important feedback to better respond to the needs of its residents. Young people feel involved and influential in the community, and incidents of vandalism have been reduced.
Find out more
To find out more on this initiative, please contact the organisation’s Coordinator through the Members Only Zone.