My research will examine and evaluate the role and sustainability of The Guide Association within the context of changing youth policy, financial austerity and reorganisation of UK youth provision.
Undertaking historical documentary research and a qualitative study, (including participatory action research), of guide units operating in North East England, I will consider the extent to which the Guiding Association is a feminist youth organisation, why it is attractive to young women and what impact it has on their lives. The research will also identify what youth policy-makers and practitioners can learn from the Guiding Association informal education model of youth work, (purpose, values, activities, impact).
My research is in collaboration with Youth Focus North East (YFNE), a third sector ‘hub’ connecting young people, youth organisations and professionals. Together we aim to identify aspects of sustainable models for the youth sector as a whole at a time when youth provision is in serious decline.