There is a long history behind this workbook and many people have contributed to its creation. Bryan Merton devised the original concept, called Getting Involved and Influential (Gi2). Thanks most of all to the many young people whose passion to speak out and activism to help achieve change are the inspiration behind these pages. Thanks especially to the young people who helped shape the book over two massive residential weekends.
Thirty young people gathered in Dorset in February 2004 to review every activity in the first draft. Significant changes resulted. We thank the Department for Education and Skills for its financial support. Eight of the original group then met in April 2004 to work through and evaluate each stage of the Act by Right journey. The young people were: Alex Renouf, Ben Travess, Chris Griffin, Lee Hitchings, Lucy Alper, Mike MacKenzie, Natalee Riley and Rob Crane.
The young people’s involvement was made possible by the passion and skill of a number of youth workers, especially Gess Aird, Participation Youth Worker, Dorset Youth and Community Service, and Sharon Adams, Regional Youth Democracy Worker. Thanks too for the support from colleagues from the youth and community services in the South West, especially from Cornwall, Devon, Wiltshire and Bath and North East Somerset.
Thanks to Andy Hopkinson for his belief and support throughout and contribution to unit 3, to Steve Beebee for unit 4 and to Jennie Fleming of the Centre for Social Action at De Montfort University for unit 5. Thanks to Becky Sharp, Carolyne Willow, Hilary Spiers, Kierra Box, Liam Cairns, Mark Farrar and Tricia Jessiman for scrutiny and advice on various drafts and to Brick (for his cartoons) and Jim Preston (for his design) for bringing the journey to life. Those who travel the journey are likely to decide on some different paths, take a few detours, hit the occasional dead-end and discover more interesting places to go and things to do. Send us a postcard. Let us know how you got on and what would make the book better. We would be delighted to hear all your travel stories and what greeted you at your destinations. Bill Badham, November 2004
Since Act by Right was first launched, it has been our privilege to hear of many journeys undertaken in its name, supporting a new generation of activists to develop the knowledge and skills to help make change happen. The archive of What’s Changed stories is a true testimony to young people’s passion and drive to see their rights fulfilled and their place as equal citizens celebrated: www.nya.org.uk/whatschanged.
Thanks to colleagues at Lead International for giving Act by Right a thorough overhaul and fitness test, with changes incorporated in this edition. And thanks most of all to Alex Farrow and to Tim Davies for their constant inspiration and encouragement to make Act by Right as useful as possible to young people’s campaigning and activism. It is also thanks to Tim that we now have Act by Right on line and to Alex for Act by Right against Climate Change. Bill Badham, June 2009