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Summary of first #iwill Fund Learning Hub LabStorms

2019-09-05

​In June 2019 the Centre facilitated our first two ‘Labstorms’ as part of the #iwill Fund Learning Hub. This blog summarises our main report on the Labstorms, outlining the central themes that came out of each session held so far.

​In June, the Centre for Youth Impact facilitated two LabStorms as part of the #iwill Fund Learning Hub. LabStorms are collaborative problem-solving sessions designed to help generate and explore actionable responses to challenges with which organisations are wrestling. The LabStorm approach has been adopted as part of the #iwill Fund Learning Hub’s Systems Workstream because we believe that if the funding system that supports youth social action is going to grow and strengthen during the remainder of the #iwill campaign, and continue to thrive beyond the length of the campaign, we need to foster ongoing, deep collaboration between youth social action funders. The LabStorms are intended to help funders develop a sense of shared challenges and identify potential common solutions.
 
The report is structured around the two LabStorms the Centre facilitated, and identifies key insights and opportunities for action.  The first LabStorm focused on community benefit and was led by Bridget McGing, Deputy Director at Pears Foundation. Three themes emerged from the discussion:

  • We need to find the right balance between focusing on young people and understanding community benefit
  • Funders need to communicate that they value community benefit
  • If funders communicate more about how they value community benefit, it does not mean funders (or delivery organisations) need to start measuring it.

 
The second LabStorm was led by Viv Jackson, Programme and Learning Manager for the Act for Change Fund, and explored what role funders should have in creating or supporting the structures that are needed to make social action a habit for life, for all young people. The themes that came out of this LabStorm were:

  • We need to understand how social action habits differ
  • We need to factor in young people’s different backgrounds if the conditions for habit formation are to emerge
  • We need to understand whether different forms of social action require different forms of support.

 
The Centre for Youth Impact will facilitate four sets of LabStorms as part of the #iwill Learning Hub. The remainder are provisionally scheduled to take place in December 2019, June 2020, and December 2020. If you would like to be involved in a future LabStorm, or if you wish to discuss any aspects of this report, please contact Bethia McNeil (bethia.mcneil@youthimpact.org.uk).

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