Manchester City Council

Young Mancunians voice their top concerns for the city following an unprecedented consultation

In a unique and original news piece, young students from schools in Manchester took control of the microphone during a council meeting to voice their desires for the city to become more child-friendly. The students’ input was the result of a six-month consultation period involving over 11,000 children and young people, who shared their opinions through various events and surveys. These insights will shape the city’s priorities for the coming years as it strives to earn UNICEF recognition as a child-friendly city. Manchester’s children and young people have identified three main areas of focus: safety and security, creating a sense of place, and promoting a healthy environment. Additionally, the city will also concentrate on three core badges: culture, cooperation and leadership, and communication. In a unique move, Manchester has also included a seventh badge, “Equal and Included,” to ensure that all its work encompasses the rights of every child, considering the city’s diverse population. The bid for recognition follows the successful “Our Year” campaign, which aimed to make up for the missed opportunities caused by the pandemic. Manchester City Council is determined to listen to the children’s demands and make positive changes that prioritize their safety, health, and community involvement. The progress made in each badge area will be closely monitored by UNICEF UK, and if sustainable progress is demonstrated, Manchester will be recognized as a UNICEF Child Friendly City, joining other communities around the world in this global initiative.

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