AS young people struggle with high levels of unemployment and lack of opportunities a consultation has been launched into the future of youth services in Ludlow and south Shropshire.

Shropshire Council and it partners are considering how to best shape and provide youth activities in the future. Seeking the views of a broad range of interested parties is a critical part of this.

Shropshire Council is keen to hear from young people, their parents and others on their new approach to commissioning activities for young people as part of its consultation, which started earlier this month.

Activities for young people include after school, weekend and holiday activities. In Shropshire they are developed for young people aged 10 to 19, and up to 25th birthday for people with learning disabilities.

At the moment, activities are provided by a range of organisations, including the council itself, providers commissioned by the council, and organisations who work independently of the council.

“In Shropshire, we want to ensure that as many young people as possible can continue to access a wide range of activities in their local area," said Ann Hartley, the Council's cabinet member with responsibility for youth activities.

"What we want in the future is that more young people get involved in the conversation about what types of activities they want and how to best provide them.

“We are therefore proposing a commissioning model which involves Local Area Youth Boards, largely comprised of young people and supporting adults. The role of a youth board is to understand what young people want, what resources already exist in the community, and what they wish to add.

“This approach combines locality commissioning and service user involvement. It is at the heart of the council’s vision of becoming a commissioning organisation. We hope that this means that in the future we will have a better match between what people want and what is provided.”

For further information about the consultation, call Marion Versluijs, Shropshire Council’s commissioning officer, on 01743 253795.

An online survey will run until March 31 and can be accessed via