Answers to some of your questions ...
We answer some of the top Questions asked about Our Hearings, Our Voice.
What is Our Hearings, Our Voice?
OHOV is a Board for children and young people living in Scotland, who are aged 8-18 and who have experience of the Children’s Hearings System – You might know it as the Panel or the Children’s Panel. The Board is for children and young people who want to make things better within the Hearings System.
Who runs OHOV?
The OHOV team are based in the Scottish Children’s Reporter Administration (SCRA) office in Stirling. The children and young people’s board will have direct links with a group of decision makers who work in the different organisations that run the Children’s Hearings System in Scotland. This group is called the Children’s Hearing Improvement Partnership (CHIP). Two of the organisations we will work closely with are Children’s Hearings Scotland (CHS) – they are the organisation who recruit the panel members and the Scottish Children’s Reporter Administration (SCRA) – who manage the Hearings Centres and the Reporters for The Hearings System. The Scottish Government funds Our Hearings, Our Voice.
How long are the applications open for?
You can apply all year round.
Why do I have to have a trusted adult to help me travel to OHOV Meetings?
The reason for this is that the OHOV Board is going to be for children and young people aged between 8-18 years old and who live anywhere in Scotland. Each Board meeting will be held in a different place to make sure that it’s fair for all Board Members to travel to. Sometimes a Board meeting will be close to where you live, while other ones might be quite far away. You might be very young, or you might not have experience of travelling on your own, or to different places. If you have far to travel (let’s say you lived in Fife and a Board meeting is Inverness) then you might need to stay overnight in accommodation (which we would pay for), so again you would need to have someone with you.
What kind of things will I be doing as part of the Board?
To start with the new Board Members will need to get to know each other andtake part in training to help you in your new role. After that we will be working as a group to decide what the Board’s priorities are and how we will communicate what we are doing. Everything we do will be with one aim – to see the Children’s Hearings System improve for children and young people in Scotland.
What are ‘Commissions’?
Commissions are short term projects that you can chose to get involved in. Examples of these could be – training panel members or Safeguarders, taking part in an event or meeting decision makers to tell them what you think, creating a new leaflet or game to help children and young people understand Hearings or any number of other things. You will set the priorities for the work of the Board. There are lots of adults and organisations who might want to ask you what you think about things they are doing. They will get in touch with the OHOV Team and see if the Board Members want to be involved. You will find out more about this at the Information Event (which might be held virtually depending on the current COVID-19 restrictions).
How will you chose who gets offered a place on the Board?
We want everyone to have a fair chance to get involved with OHOV. We are looking for a Board that includes children and young people across the age range of 8-18, from different parts of Scotland and who are passionate about things changing within the Hearings System. The OHOV Team will make decisions based on all parts of the application – so what you put in your form about why you want to be involved, getting involved on the recruitment event and the information on your reference from an adult who knows you well.
How long do I have to commit to being a Board Member?
We want you to enjoy your time with OHOV and we think it’s a great opportunity to grow and develop new skills. We also want to be able to keep the Board fresh and make sure as many children and young people as possible get the chance to be involved.
We are asking Board Members to make a commitment for 2 years to start with. That said, we know that’s a long time and life can change a LOT, and you might change your mind about wanting to be involved, so it will always be flexible. There might be times where you need to take a bit of time out from the Board and that’s okay too. It’s got to work for you.
As you come to the end of your time with OHOV we will work with you to look at what other opportunities you are interested in and could get involved in. This might be through work placements, employment opportunities, further education, getting involved in campaigning, or volunteering with another group or even setting up a project of your own!