“The Young Leadership Programme has allowed me to gain so much more of an insight of politics and gave me the opportunity to talk to well known people who have inspired me to work hard for my goals.
I got to talk to Tommy Judge who is the Lord Mayor of Manchester, he told us about his journey and how he got to where he is, a truly inspiring story! I also got to interact with people like David Lammy, Angela Rayner, Naz Shah and many more politicians! It taught me that I don’t need to come from a politics background or have qualifications within that sector to get involved in politics.
It’s a passion and you have to be determined to want change! The programme has allowed me to pick up in vital skills needed to start my journey within politics and I am so thankful to Afzal Khan for organising it.”
Maraim Javed, YLP 2021 Graduate
“Being a participant in Afzal Khan’s Young Leadership Programme was an unforgettable experience. The Programme itself was wide ranging and covered the key factors in contemporary politics. In addition to this, Afzal and his brilliant team made everyone feel welcome and comfortable to ask questions so the participants could really engage with all the sessions. Despite the Programme being virtual this year, I felt that because the sessions were so interactive it was still such a valuable and enjoyable experience. Every speaker was truly passionate about the impact that young people can have on society.
One of my favourite days was when we spoke to Lucy West, Head of News at ITV Granada. Lucy gave us a real insight into how the media ecosystem functions and taught us some really valuable leadership skills too. Later in the day we had a discussion with Trade Unions about their vital work and how to build a successful campaign. I felt really lucky to be able to speak to such experienced and successful campaigners.
Having the opportunity to visit parliament (virtually) was incredible. In the morning, we had discussions with Members of the House of Lords and in the afternoon spoke to Members of Parliament. It was a fantastic opportunity to speak to people like David Lammy, Angela Rayner and Lord Wajid Khan. I have to admit – I was a bit starstruck at times!
There was also a session with members of Afzal’s team, who spoke about their role in his office. We learned about the different roles in constituency and parliamentary offices, which was eye-opening and inspired me to want to do something similar to them in the future.
When the Programme ended, I felt that I had learned so much about how politics functions and how I can get more involved. Every session taught me something and it was thoroughly enjoyable. It was an incredibly valuable week and the lessons I learned I will keep with me for a long time. I would recommend the Programme to anybody who wants to learn more about the power young people can have in politics.
I would like to thank Afzal and all of his staff for giving me this amazing opportunity.”
Jamie Gradel, YLP 2021 Graduate