On 20th November 2014, HRH The Prince of Wales will meet young people involved in social action across the UK via his first ever Google+ Hangout. This will mark the first anniversary of the #iwill campaign which he launched in 2013 with support from the Prime Minister, Deputy Prime Minister and Leader of the Opposition.
The #iwill campaign is run by Step Up To Serve, an independent charity set-up to coordinate all related activity.
#iwill aims to make social action the norm for all 10-20 year olds in the UK by 2020. Youth social action is defined as ?young people taking practical action in the service of others?, such as volunteering, fundraising or campaigning. #iwill also promotes the fact that social action not only benefits the young participants, but also strengthens their communities, creating a ?double benefit?.
The campaign is working across society to: spread the word about the benefits of youth social action; embed it in the lives of all 10-20 year olds; and create fresh opportunities for them to take part.
Hosted by Alex Jones from the BBC?s One Show, the 30 minute Google+ Hangout will give The Prince of Wales an opportunity to talk publicly with a group of young people about their experiences of social action, with a focus on how they are using technology to help others.
Since launching, Step Up To Serve and #iwill have helped secure significant new funding for youth social action, as well as support from over 100 business, education, faith and voluntary sector organisations. These include O2, Lloyds Bank, National Grid, Sky, the Cabinet Office, Ofsted, Duke of Edinburgh Awards, The Prince?s Trust, Scout Association and the Media Trust. All supporters have given pledges of support, which they are already delivering. The campaign also enjoys cross-party support.
Joining The Prince of Wales and Alex Jones at Clarence House will be young #iwill Ambassador George Fielding, BEM, Helen Davies, Live Chat Moderator for YouthNet and Ronan Dunne, Chief Executive of O2. The four young people joining via the web from around the UK will be Jordan Caldwell from Northern Ireland, Hannah Palmer-Davis from the Isle of Wight, Devan Witter from Yorkshire and Sarah Shaikh from Surrey.
George Fielding, BEM, #iwill Ambassador says: ?I am greatly honoured to take part in the Google+ Hangout with the Prince of Wales. Social action is the foundation for the life I cherish today. The #iwill campaign presents an unparalleled opportunity for organisations, schools and businesses to encourage, promote and embed the benefits of social action. One thing is certain – the lives of both young people and those they are helping will be changed for the better as a result of their support.”
Ronan Dunne, Chief Executive Officer, O2, added: ?I?ve seen for myself how social action can help young people gain confidence, experience and skills ? that?s why the #iwill campaign is so important. At O2 our Think Big programme provides funding, mentoring and digital skills training to young people running social action projects across the UK. I?m involved in the Google+ Hangout and anniversary events because I want to encourage more businesses to join the campaign. They can make a positive impact by supporting youth social action opportunities and helping young people achieve their potential and ambitions.?