Woking Borough Council is working with the Electoral Commission to promote its ‘Welcome to Your Vote Week’ campaign, which encourages young people to learn more about how democracy works and register to vote.
Beginning on Monday 29 January, this year’s theme is ‘Your Voice Matters’, which celebrates the impact everyone can make through the democratic system on issues important to them.
Across the UK, schools, colleges and youth groups will be running activities to encourage young people to get involved and use their voice, by holding votes, registration drives and assemblies on the importance of engaging in democracy.
The campaign also highlights that 17 year olds, and some 16 year olds, are entitled to register to vote and join the electoral register. An ‘attainer’ is a young person who will become of voting age (18 years old) during the life of the current electoral register.
Julie Fisher, Chief Executive and Electoral Registration Officer of Woking Borough Council said: ‘This campaign is vital for strengthening the voices of the young people of Woking, to move forward with their ideas to shape the future and get involved with local democracy.’
Craig Westwood, Director of Communications, Policy and Research at the Electoral Commission, said: “Democratic education helps to deepen young people’s understanding of and confidence in elections. The Electoral Commission is working not only to help young people understand the process, but also that politics and democracy impacts everything around them.
“Welcome to Your Vote Week was created to help address lower levels of registration, and help young people engage in democracy not just for a week, but all year round.”
To coincide with the initiative, the Electoral Commission has produced a set of educational resources for anyone who wants to start a conversation at their school or youth group about democracy, voting and elections. The resources are designed to help improve the political literacy of young people in the UK.
Educators and students who want to take part in ‘Welcome to your vote’ week can access the free resources from the Electoral Commission website.