CHIVA Youth Committee Face to Face Meet Up

A one-day face to face youth committee meeting was held in London in June. The 12 who attended dutifully took lateral flow covid tests, got up ridiculously early to catch trains, and battled through the London heat to meet their friends at a church hall near Euston station. After more than a year of zoom meetings they were overjoyed to be in the same room!

We welcomed some new members to the group and tried to draw each other without looking at the paper as an ice breaker exercise (it’s harder than you think!)

The main aim of the meeting was to begin preparing the symposium for the Chiva Conference later in the year. This session was facilitated by peer worker Becky and the group talked about different inequalities they experienced in their day to day lives. The boys group shared experiences of being stopped and searched by police; they felt this was because of the sports casual clothes they wear and because they are black. They described how they felt anxious and scared as soon as they left the house, and the impact of this on their mental health. They all agreed it was important their clinic teams knew about this as it had a wider impact on their health and well being.

The group shared pizza and some social time after all the hard work and began the train journeys home.