Be a Voice for Your Generation: Join the Northern Ireland Youth Assembly!

Want to make a real impact in Northern Ireland? If you’re in Years 9 to 12, this could be your golden ticket to shape our future.

Applications Open

25 September 2023
Members of the Youth Assembly posing for a group picture in the Great Hall of Parliament Buildings.
Members of the Youth Assembly in the Assembly Chamber of Parliament Buildings.
Members of the Youth Assembly at one of their meetings pictured in the Long Gallery of Parliament Buildings.
Members of the Youth Assembly meeying in their committee groups at Parliament Buildings on Friday 30 September 2022.

What is the Northern Ireland Youth Assembly?

It’s a group of 90 young people from Years 9 to 12, (this is roughly ages 12-16), ready to voice their thoughts and shake things up in Northern Ireland. Our Youth Assembly Members take on the big issues – the future of education, health, rights, equality and the environment. Apply to join and let’s make waves together! 🌊🤘

Why Join the Northern Ireland Youth Assembly?

  • Have Your Say: Influence the big decisions that affect our lives in Northern Ireland.
  • Meet Like-Minded Peers: Connect with 90 other young people from Years 9 to 12.
  • Tackle Real Issues: Discuss and act on topics like education, health, environment, rights and equality.
Two female members of the 2021/2023 Youth Assembly sitting at a table in the Long Gallery of Parliament Buildings during a Youth Assembly workshop and meeting.

Ready to Rock the Future?

Join the Northern Ireland Youth Assembly!

Applications Open

25 September 2023
Members of the Youth Assembly in the Great Hall of Parliament Buildings taking am "usie" with the Assembly Speaker Alex Maskey.

What's expected of you?

  • Duration: A two-year adventure awaits you!
  • Meetings: Attend at least two plenary meetings in the Assembly Chamber yearly. We’ll also meet regularly for smaller committee meetings, training sessions and drop in sessions both online and face to face.
  • Training: Get prepped with essential training sessions. Don’t worry; we’ve got your back!

How do we pick our Members?

Our selection process, designed along with young people like you, ensures we represent people from all walks of life. We believe that a diverse Youth Assembly is the best way to represent the needs of all young people in our community.

We want to create a space where you can learn from each other, build relationships regardless of difference, and make decisions that benefit everyone. If you’re passionate about making a difference in your community, are willing to listen and learn from others, are creative and innovative, and are committed to working together to build a better future for all, then we encourage you to apply!

Youth Assembly Members (seated at a table in the Long Gallery, Parliament Buildings) talking with Alex Maskey, Speaker of the Northern Ireland Assembly

Got questions? We've got answers

Mark your calendars! Apply between 25 September and 16 October 2023.

Anyone currently in Years 9, 10, 11 and 12 can apply. (This is roughly ages 12-16). We welcome applications from all young people living in Northern Ireland.

From 25 September you can click on any of the links on this page to get to our online form. Easy peasy!

When you click on the link, it will redirect you to our application site iTrent. Do not create a log in, use the option to “Continue as Guest User”.

The application form is available via a platform called iTrent. Do not create a log in, use the option to “Continue as Guest User”.

The form itself is only three short pages. Select the answers that best fit you from the options provided. There are no essay questions. The form should only take a maximum of 10 minutes to complete.

If you need the form in any other format email the team at youthassembly@niassembly.gov.uk or call us on 028 90 521777.

Of course, just remember we need your Name, Address, Date of Birth and Constituency on the form and not the details of the person helping you with the form.

Once you get to the last page of the 3 page form, click “Save”. This will return you to the launch page. From here click “Submit”.

If you have successfully submitted your application you will see the image below on your screen:

Screenshot of the application submitted screen from the iTrent application.

Please note that you will not receive a confirmation email.

Don’t panic! If you have any problems completing the form please phone 02890 521 699 between 9am-5pm, Mon-Fri, or email recruitment@niassembly.gov.uk.

Call Joanne on 02890 521741 or Maria on 02890 521699, we are happy to help.

No problem! Email the team at youthassembly@niassembly.gov.uk  or call 028 90 521777.

Be Part of a Diverse Team
As a Youth Assembly Member, you’ll join a diverse group of 90 young people from every corner of Northern Ireland. It’s a unique blend of backgrounds and perspectives, and you’ll be right at the heart of it.

Engage with Decision Makers
This is your platform to communicate directly with key decision-makers. It’s about voicing your concerns, sharing your insights, and influencing the issues that matter to you.

Specialise in Areas of Interest
You will have the opportunity to align with specific committees that focus on topics you’re passionate about. And remember, twice a year, the entire Youth Assembly meets for a plenary session in the Assembly Chamber.

 


 

Your Three Core Responsibilities:

  1. Engage with MLAs and Assembly Committees. Your insights are invaluable when it comes to new legislation or inquiries that may impact young people just like you.

  2. Delve into topics and issues you’re most interested in by joining specialised committees with other Youth Assembly Members. Whether it’s environmental concerns, educational reforms, or cultural initiatives, you’ll be at the forefront of these discussions.

  3.  Beyond the regular meetings, there are numerous youth-focused projects, events, and consultation opportunities. It’s about amplifying the youth voice and ensuring it’s heard at every level.

Each year, you will have two main meetings or plenary sessions held in Parliament Buildings. This is when all Youth Assembly Members come together to discuss particular issues. These meetings will usually be held in the Assembly Chamber and presided over by the Speaker of the Northern Ireland Assembly. Attendance at these meetings is very important for all Youth Assembly Members. Whether the meetings are up in Parliament Buildings or happening online, we will give you plenty of notice to help you plan around your other commitments. 

Regular Online Engagements
Much of the Youth Assembly’s activities will take place online. The Youth Assembly Support Team will organise regular online meetings, drop-in sessions, and training. Typically, these online activities will be scheduled for the evenings. They will last around one hour, and be held once a month. 

Preparation is Key
Youth Assembly Members are expected to be proactive: regularly check emails, review materials before meetings, coming up with questions, taking notes, and occasionally preparing and delivering brief speeches. But don’t worry we will give you all the training and support you’ll need.

As far as possible, meetings will be held outside of school hours. We try not to meet during exam time and avoid meeting during the summer holidays.

The committee meetings, drop-in sessions and training activities usually take place online and in the evenings. Full meetings of the Youth Assembly (Plenary meetings) are held in Parliament Buildings on Fridays or Saturdays.

Yes. Youth Assembly Members can claim travel expenses when attending Youth Assembly meetings and events. Refreshments will also be provided for our face to face meetings.

We will email all applicants to let them know if they have been selected or not by the end of October.

Hear from Past Members

Don’t just take our word for it. Hear from our past Youth Assembly members about their experiences.

🚀 Still Not Sure? Take the Quiz. Find Out Why You Should Apply for the Youth Assembly! 🚀

🎤 Grab the Mic.
The Stage is Yours.

Join the Northern Ireland Youth Assembly. Let Us Hear You!​  

Applications Open

25 September 2023

Need any more information?

Get in touch with us at youthassembly@niassembly.gov.uk

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