An interview with Youth Parliament member and St Joseph’s College Y11 student, Isaac Codjoe.
I spoke with talented young student Isaac Codjoe, currently residing in Year 11, about his experience of being part of the Youth Parliament. The Youth Parliament is a body of 11-18 year old students, acting as the voice of young people all around the country.
What made you decide to run for Youth Parliament?
I decided to run to become a member of the UKYP because as Gandhi once said, “be the change you want to see in the world”. I would like to be a part of that change in the decision making process that influences making Ipswich a better environment and more enjoyable community for the youth.
How did you go about getting elected for the Youth Parliament?
To get elected for the UKYP there were several steps. First of all, I wrote a manifesto which included points which I wanted the people of Ipswich to vote for me on. Then I created a campaign trail where I spread the word trying to get people to vote for me, I did this through social media and by visiting schools such as my old primary school and putting up posters around Ipswich.
What are your aims within the Youth Parliament?
I intend to raise mental health awareness as 70% of people who suffer from mental health issues go through it alone without any support which is 70% too many in my opinion. Also I wish to add more youth communities and services.
What advice would you give to someone who wanted to run for Youth Parliament themselves?
I would say, be passionate for the change you’re trying to bring about, as passionate leaders make the best leaders, hence people are more likely to get behind you and support you. Also, have confidence in yourself and your idea and analyse the idea to see if it could work and if not, how you could make it work.
In what ways did the College help you become a member of the Youth Parliament?
The College helped prepare me to become an MYP as it gave me confidence. It gave me confidence in myself which enabled me to run for the position. Also it is thanks to the College that I entered in the first place, as a member of staff told me about the UKYP and encouraged me to run.
What is your favourite part of being a Youth Parliament member?
I would say that the best thing about being a part of the Youth Parliament is the fact that it enables you to have a voice on the greater platform. This is as every year during November we have a meeting in the House of Commons where we talk about points which we’d like to lobby the UK government about, through the Make Your Mark campaign.
Some last words of advice for a young person wanting to make a change like you.
A few words of advice that I’d give would be that, you should always aim to have confidence in yourself and in your ability. As if you truly believe in your idea , people are likely to get behind you. Also don’t be scared to take risks, as long as you have analysed the situation properly. Also make sure you try to network with people as much as possible, as the more people you connect yourself with, the better .
If you would like to get involved with the UK Youth Parliament go to: http://www.ukyouthparliament.org.uk