Scotland's youth take the lead in 2018

Year of Young People launched.

A major programme of events and activities to celebrate Scotland’s young people will take place in 2018, First Minister Nicola Sturgeon will announce today.

A global first, the Year of Young People 2018 will provide a platform to showcase the personalities, talents and achievements of Scotland’s young people.

It will give young people, aged 8 to 26, new opportunities to influence decision making on issues affecting their lives and be involved in cultural and sporting opportunities across the country.

Young people have been involved in designing the programme, with more than 500 signed up to volunteer as Year of Young People 2018 Ambassadors.

EventScotland will deliver a programme of events for all ages, and Young Scot, Children in Scotland, the Scottish Youth Parliament and YouthLink Scotland will lead youth participation and involvement in the Year.

Ahead of meeting young people in Dumfries the First Minister said:

“This is an opportunity to shine a light on the fantastic contribution young people make to life in Scotland.

“The Year of Young People will give young people a new platform and new opportunities for their voices to be heard in all parts of our society and hopefully help to foster a better understanding, co-operation and respect between generations.

“The talents of our young people span the length and breadth of the country – evident in the great programme they have helped to put together. I want to thank all of the partners involved in supporting this initiative, who have helped to put together what I am sure will be a wonderful celebration of young people in 2018.”

To support the Year, a group of young leaders called Communic18, will work with organisations throughout 2018.

Communic18 member Lauren Asher, 18, from Dumfries, said:

“I wanted to be involved in the Year to help challenge the perceptions of young people.

“I have suffered from mental health issues and as part of my role, I hope to give more young people a voice on this issue so that we can change attitudes and ensure young people are having their say on issues which affect their lives.”

Other partners involved in delivering the Year of Young People 2018 include Creative Scotland and Glasgow European Championships 2018.

YoYP 2018 Events Programme

To celebrate the Year, EventScotland, part of VisitScotland’s Events Directorate has developed a nation-wide programme which for the first time, is co-designed by young people and the events and festivals sector.

The programme includes both new events and new programme strands for annual events. Highlights of the exciting year-long events programme which begins with Edinburgh Hogmanay’s #Scotword project on the 30 December 2017 are:

  • Glasgow International Comedy Festival’s School of Stand-up (Feb/ March)
  • A community-led Scottish Mental Health Arts Festival across Scotland (May)
  • Scotland’s first youth TEDxYouth@Glasgow (May)
  • STAGE IT! in Dumfries and Galloway (May/ June)
  • Diverse CiTay Festival in Perth (June)
  • A Scottish Youth Poetry Slam (Sep/Oct)
  • The Big Takeover in Shetland (Sep)
  • The Royal National Mòd (Oct)
  • Las! Ignite! at An Lanntair in Stornoway (Oct)
  • The Sunday Mail Young Scot Awards (Nov)

2018 will also see a line-up of youth-led events as part of Create18 – an events programme co-ordinated by Young Scot. Young people will receive funding to run activities focusing on raising awareness of issues that affect their lives, tackle stigmas and prejudices and celebrate diversity within local communities.

For event listings please visit  

For more information on YoYP 2018 please visit

More events will be revealed in the coming months. Keep an eye on this site or follow #YOYP2018 for updates!

YoYP 2018 Partners

Partnership is crucial to the Year’s success and the Scottish Government is working with a core group of organisations to deliver the Year; EventScotland, Young Scot, YouthLink Scotland, Children in Scotland, Scottish Youth Parliament, and Creative Scotland.

Year of Young People 2018 will join up with existing events happening in 2018. The programme will work closely with the Glasgow European Championships 2018 to provide young people with new cultural and sporting opportunities and give them a chance for their talents to shine on a global stage.

Furthermore, the programme will work with partners across all 32 local authorities and organisations across the third, public and private sectors.

Paul Bush OBE, VisitScotland's Director of Events, said:

“We are delighted to be supporting Scotland’s Year of Young People 2018 with a year-long programme of events that will celebrate our amazing young talent and provide opportunities for young people to express themselves through culture, sport and a range of other activities.”

“Working with the events and festivals industry in Scotland, 2018 provides us with a special opportunity to showcase both our rich annual events programme and a host of brand new events which will bring the themes of the year alive.  The programme, which is entirely co-designed with Young People, will further reinforce Scotland's position as the perfect stage for events, putting young people in the driving seat and giving them a wonderful opportunity to show the world what they are made of."

Louise Macdonald OBE, Chief Executive of Young Scot, said: “The Year of Young People 2018 is a fantastic opportunity to put young people centre stage. This is a chance for organisations and policy makers alike to work with young people to improve policy and services for everyone across Scotland.

Young people are doing phenomenal things every single day, the Year of Young People is a chance for us to celebrate their achievements and let everyone know how great our young people truly are.”

Jim Sweeny MBE, Chief Executive, YouthLink Scotland, said:  “This year will be an amazing opportunity to celebrate our country’s greatest asset, our incredible young people, their achievements and the youth workers, teachers and others who support them. Roll on 2018!”

Jackie Brock, Chief Executive of Children in Scotland, said:

"The aims of the Year of Young People 2018 - encouraging young people to become leaders within their communities and beyond, and supporting them to benefit from new opportunities, are key to our values and our collaboration with Young Scot and the Scottish Youth Parliament. We are delighted to support YOYP2018 and look forward to the coming year.”

Follow #YOYP2018 on Twitter and stay up-to-date with the latest news and goings-on.


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