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Solomon Curtis (third from right) taking his seat on the Youth Select Committee 2013.

Solomon Curtis (third from right) taking his seat on the Youth Select Committee 2013. (Photograph ©British Youth Council)

Solomon Curtis elected youngest Vice Chair of global youth voice organisation.

Solomon is not only the youngest member of the HOT team, but has achieved an outstanding election success – and we offer him our heartiest congratulations! HOT’s Cathy Simpson reports and reflects.

Solomon, 17, currently serves as a UK Youth Parliament Member for Hastings, Bexhill and Upper Rother, along with influencing government education policy on the House of Commons Youth Select Committee. He was elected Vice-Chair of the British Youth Council (BYC) on Saturday 31 August at the BYC’s annual conference.

A pensive Solomon Curtis as he ponders his new responsibilities. (Photograph ©British Youth Council)

He is thought to be one of the youngest ever elected trustees, and particularly Vice Chair of the charity, which has launched the careers of leading politicians. Solomon contested Dara Farrell, the incumbent, for the role of Vice Chair, Head of Campaigns and Communications – and received over 60% of the vote.

The British Youth Council represents over 500,000 young people in the country through democratic elections for programmes such as the UK Youth Parliament and National Consultation. Its membership ranges from Girls Guides and Scouts to International Youth Voice work, making it the largest youth voice network in the world.

Solomon said: “It was such an unexpected result as Dara, now my predecessor, was such a strong candidate and Vice Chair. It’s such an honour to represent a worldwide organisation that has pioneered campaigns, particularly votes at 16 – and for me to lead these campaigns is an honour and privilege.”

Solomon, who also vice-chairs the St Leonards Town Team, will follow in the wake of Peter Mandleson, who once chaired the BYC. After a recent interview with Hastings Online Times, he was described as “Inspiring an Aspiring Generation” and said: “I hope this shows all young people in Hastings that this town is changing and if you work hard, opportunities arise. I still believe this is the greatest town in the world and it’s down to us, the next generation, to break the barriers that we face, coming from a deprived seaside town.”

Solomon has always shown a deep commitment to issues affecting peoples’ lives. His inspirational, lively approach fires the enthusiasm of all the young people he works with; which is particularly important at a time when apathy and disillusionment are widespread among the electorate in general and young voters in particular.

His election success is not only an honour and a privilege, but a highly impressive and well-deserved achievement – and yet another step on what will hopefully be a glittering career.


Posted 09:31 Friday, Sep 6, 2013 In: Grassroots

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