Birmingham’s Youth Offending Conference highlights importance of opportunities across the city

Crowd of people looking at a speaker on a stage Published: 25th Mar 2022

Birmingham Children’s Trust hosted professionals from across the city for the Youth Offending Service Conference for the first time since the pandemic started.

The conference saw staff from the Youth Offending Service in the Trust welcome partner organisations, Service volunteers, Youth Offending Service board members, and business support colleagues to the Tally Ho Conference & Banqueting Centre.

The aim of the conference was to explore how the different teams across the city work collectively to support children, families and victims and provide delegates with the opportunity to shape the future direction and vision for the service.

Jenny Turnross, Director of Practice at Birmingham Children’s Trust and Co-Chair of The Birmingham and Solihull Local Family Justice Board, opened the event.

Said Jenny: “Over the past two years we’ve endured a really challenging period with the Pandemic. I’m really proud that our colleagues across the youth justice system have really continued to be out there working with our most vulnerable children, young people, families, and their victims.”

“There are lots of issues in the city, we’re worried about crime, we’re worried about the impact of crime on our children. But I know that through our restorative practice approach and thinking about the whole family, we can really capitalize on the good work that we’re already doing.”

Another speaker was Deputy Police and Crime Commissioner, Tom McNeill, who spoke about his passion for projects that empower vulnerable young people and families.

Attendees also heard from co-ordinators from the Youth Offending Service Girls Empowerment Team and the Youth Offending Service Music Project, and there were readings and performances from several children that they work alongside.

Janine Saleh, Head of Birmingham Youth Offending Service at the Trust, said: “Today's event has been truly wonderful. The energy and enthusiasm in the room has been contagious.

"Not only have we heard from a number of key speakers who have talked about the trauma many of our children have experienced, but we have seen the impact of what we do and have heard from four of the children we are working alongside – they were brave and fantastic! We are transforming our services, we are aspiring high for our children, families and victims and I am confident that in coming together as one service, with the support of our partners, we can achieve this."