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Making innovation work for good. T:@inspirechilli

Tuesday 14 February 2012

We're on a journey

On the flight to Belfast, I catch the sun set bursting orange and peach through a bank of clouds.  I’m thinking what might be achieved tomorrow; wondering what will begin; hoping Open Talent is landing to fresh roots.  But at the back of my mind, all the time I return to a poster on the wall at Gatwick Airport, saying ‘we’re on a journey’ . The poster cleverly informs us that the airport is under-going changes, that whatever gaps in the fabric or annoyances, there is something good to come. We understand the language. Journeys are something we enter into, looking forward to what lies beyond, enjoying the potential of what might come. ‘We’re on a journey’ is a call to aspiration. Hey, we are going somewhere. It’s exciting. Whatever we lack now, think ahead to what might be.
The poster at Gatwick is something we can understood, sympathise with, accept.
How different our perspective can be for the young people society defines as problems.  If you are unemployed, if you are an offender, if you are whatever deficit label , then you are no longer on a journey but a pathway to be supported and nudged along into a dead-end; you are no longer on a journey but someone who has already arrived without potential to be more than you are now.  
It is the responsibility of charities to remind us all that young people, whatever we call them, are on a journey to our future. That it is not a black and white face of poverty to hide away from, but something and somewhere and someone that could be just as exciting as the destinations we wish for ourselves. They are all on a journey – what are we doing to help them get there? Where do we want 'there' to be?
Let’s learn from the poster at Gatwick.  Tell the world that all young people are on a journey with us.

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