Adults make decisions and take actions that affect children and young people’s lives every day. We do this as parents, carers, community leaders, professionals, service providers and elected and appointed public representatives. What we decide and do, colours and affects how children and young people experience the world, as well as how
they understand their place within it.

Wouldn’t it be great to know what children and young people think –
what they really think; what matters to them, what worries them, what they want for the future? When we talk about things like health, wellbeing, learning, play, work and the environment, what do these things mean to children and young people? What challenges are they facing?

The following guide provides insights into what children and young people think about citizenship. Young people have told the Commissioner they want to have more conversations with adults about the big picture issues. They want to be listened to and taken seriously. They want to see adults take action on climate change to protect the environment for future generations and they want to learn how they can be leaders in their own right. They want to learn about their rights and responsibilities as citizens, and how to advocate for change on the issues that matter to them most. They’re also keen to learn about volunteering opportunities so they can help others while they develop their skills and networks.