Youth Engagement Expert Brief

Curious Minds are seeking 5 Youth Engagement Experts to support young people to take part in the North West’s newest heritage programme ‘Hope Streets’

About Hope Streets:

Hope Streets is a brand new, 5 year project funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund, which will see young people aged 11 – 25 revolutionise the way museums work with their peers.

It is being led by a consortium of three organisations in the North West; Curious Minds, Youth Focus North West and Museum Development North West.

It’s called Hope Streets, because we want museums and heritage organisations to help young people build their hopes for the future by connecting to the past and to the present.

We also want those museums to see young people as their hope for the future – their future visitors and workforce, and the makers, interpreters and guardians of history.

Over 5 years, we’ll continue to develop the museum’s skills, plans and ambitions through practical youth projects, with the museum staff taking an increasingly active role.  Young people will be continually guiding how this work develops, and we expect to create a really wide range of opportunities for young people to get involved.

By the end of 5 years, museums will have permanently changed how they work with young people – we’ll be expecting to see young people initiating, leading and guiding projects that are interesting and relevant to their peers, sitting on boards, transforming the way museums communicate with young audiences, regularly involved in making decisions, and challenging how museums are run.  We expect the museums to have made permanent changes to their plans and the way they do things and have a staff team who feel confident, skilled and enthusiastic about young people and what they bring to the museum.

We are working with a lead partner museum in each of the 5 sub-regions of the North West.

  • The lead partners are:
  • The Atkinson (Sefton – Merseyside)
  • Bolton Museums (Bolton – Greater Manchester)
  • Tullie House (Cumbria)
  • Lancashire Museums Service (Lancashire)
  • West Cheshire Museums (Cheshire West and Chester)

Year one activity will predominantly focus around young being involved in a programme called ‘Hope Happenings’ – Pop-up participatory events designed by young people.  ‘Hope Happenings’ will kick-start the 5 year project, help to form new relationships and demonstrate just how powerful it can be when young people take the lead. It will be a chance for young people to demonstrate their ability to inject excitement and innovation into heritage.

Hope Happenings will be a single artistic event, created by a group of professional artists under the age of 25.    5 groups of young people will recruit the Young Artist Team. They will then provide the research and stimulus for the Young Artist Team to respond to, draw from the young people people’s findings, thoughts and opinions of the heritage they uncover of their local ‘Hope Street’. Hope Happenings will make exciting use of digital technology and either take place in each of the five areas, or somewhere centrally (e.g. online) with local engagement facilitated in each area.

A small group of young people aged between 11 and 25 will work with each lead partner museum to gather, input, guide, plan and receive the Hope Happenings into their local area.  They will:

  • Contribute to choosing the team of artists who will produce the work.
  • Investigate the heritage of their local Hope Street with full support from and access to the staff and resources of their local museum.
  • Potentially interact with the public, gathering additional material on the theme of Hope.
  • Provide their ideas, inspiration, opinions and everything they gather to the artist team, who will use it as source material.
  • Facilitate the engagement of other local people with the Hope Happening – the exact nature of this will depend on the artistic product.


Youth Engagement Expert Role Description

The Youth Engagement Expert will have primary responsibility for leading the local group of young people in one of the five geographical areas (or ‘Hope Hubs’) through the ‘Hope Happenings’.  The person undertaking this role will demonstrate and model excellence in youth work practice, providing inspiration to museum staff.

The Youth Engagement Expert will work in partnership with the member of museum staff leading the Hope Streets project in their area (known as the Hope Hub Lead) to plan and deliver a series of sessions for the young participants. This will include drawing on the assistance of museum staff who have less experience of working with young people to make best use of their skills and the museum’s assets. It may involve supporting young people to visit local sites, or interact with the general public. It may involve supporting the young people to visit, or communicate with local youth sector organisations to promote engagement with the Hope Happening.

The young people will have the opportunity to complete an Arts Award through the project.  This will be led by the Hope Hub Lead, and supported by the Youth Engagement Expert. A suitable person to carry out this role would:

  • Be an excellent, highly experienced youth worker
  • Be knowledgeable about the local youth sector
  • Have experience of partnership working with venues, artists or other creative professionals
  • Have a creative approach to designing and leading activities for young people
  • Have an interest in arts and heritage
  • Be a clear and confident communicator (both written and spoken)
  • Be reliable and well organised
  • Have undertaken Safeguarding Training in the last 2 years
  • Have an up to date DBS check
  • Have personal liability insurance or be willing to obtain it
  • You do not need to have expertise in heritage to undertake this role, as you will be working alongside heritage professionals. However, an interest in or enthusiasm for heritage would be useful.

We welcome applications from organisations interested in fulfilling this role from their existing staff. In this case, we would want you to name an identified individual who would remain consistent throughout the project. If you wish to apply in this way, please submit a brief CV for both the individual and the organisation as part of your application.

Practical stuff:

  • The role will average out at approx. 1 day a week of your time, this may be one full day or a number of shorter sessions. For example, you may work less hours some weeks and more hours in the run up to events. This can be negotiated with the Hope Hub Lead and the young people themselves.
  • Initially the contract will be for 32 ‘days’ over 8 months. The total fee will be £4,800 inclusive of all expenses. There is potential for the role to continue beyond this time.
  • The museum will, where possible, provide a hot-desk space for you and a point of contact/support. (Being based in the venue, rather than working remotely will allow you to develop better knowledge of, and relationship with the museum)
  • Some travel to other areas of the North West will be required on occasion. Travel costs beyond 20 miles of the museum will be reimbursed.
  • The project sessions with young people, and all other work associated with this contract will take place between the 15th of November 2018 and May 2019, exact times to be negotiated with the Hope Hub Lead.
  • The project will be complete and evaluated by the last day of May 2019.

How to apply:

Please send a copy of your CV (including two referees) and a personal statement explaining why you would be perfect for this role.  This can be sent via email to: by 9AM on the 24th of October.

Please make it clear which area you are applying to work in.


Interviews will take place between the week commencing 29th of October and the 12th of November, in the area you are applying to work in.  Dates will be confirmed as soon as possible.

For the successful applicants, a group induction to project will take place on the 14th of November in Preston. It is essential that you are available for this date.

Posted on 17 October 2018 under General news

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