Youth engagement advisory group

We're busy providing young people with exciting opportunities across England and Wales.

Lead volunteer with the Canal & River Trust Lead volunteer with the Canal & River Trust

Providing opportunities for engagement and increasing understanding of the waterways is critical to inspiring a new generation of enthusiasts who will ensure their long-term sustainability.

A varied programme of youth engagement projects has been delivered in the past under our Waterways Action Squad brand. These include: a north west based youth volunteering project for 16-25 year olds, a 6-month employability, volunteering and personal development programme for 16-19 year olds not in education, employment or training (NEET) and the creation of a youth activity centre at the National Waterways Museum.

Ambitions and aspirations

The youth engagement advisory group understands more fully the wider context of engaging young people, so that we can plan and deliver effective, innovative programmes. 

The group also helps with issues of significance relating to engaging young people, especially those that may be innovative or controversial. 

Meet the team

Louis Howell (Chair)

Louis is a dynamic and rounded professional with experience that spans the voluntary youth sector, education sector and the world of small business. Today, he runs a marketing transformation company, co-runs an educational social enterprise and is a trustee and volunteer at 2 small London-based charities. His work with the Canal & River Trust began when he worked on the Action Squads Programme, headed up by NCVYS, which engaged and supported young people in social action across the canal network. This partnership, combined with the fantastic relationship maintained with the team since then, has seen Louis come back regularly to train the Trust’s staff and volunteers on the most effective ways of engaging and working with young people.

Chloe Donovan

Young facilitator in East of England and development officer for Young People's Skills.

  • Active in youth participation since the age of 12
  • Member of Connexions youth council
  • Was member of the UK Youth Parliament
  • Led planning group for Young Partners Award
  • Currently a member of the Canal & River Trust Council

Jamie Agombar

Jamie is head of Sustainability at the National Union of Students.

  • Over his ten years at NUS, Jamie has created a strong student voice on sustainability, and a compelling vision for the sector
  • Jamie has grown NUS’s sustainability function from a single role to 25 full-time dedicated sustainability staff, with NUS delivering successful individual and institutional sustainability change projects into 100 universities and colleges
  • NUS is regarded as a strong agent for change on sustainability, with Jamie sitting on many key UK higher education sector committees, including the Higher Education Funding Council for England Leadership, Governance and Management Strategic Advisory Committee, and the Higher Education Academy Education for Sustainable Development Advisory Group
  • In February 2014 Jamie won the Guardian University Award for Inspiring Leadership for work on sustainability

Jon Boagey

Operations director and deputy chief executive at the National Youth Agency (NYA).

  • Has worked with NYA since 1994 in a variety of roles
  • In Thailand and Laos set up public information programme for young refugees, and at the British Refugee Council in London
  • Trained as youth worker and community volunteer
  • Extensive senior management experience

Liam Burns

Liam is currently head of Policy and Public Affairs for The Scout Association, a movement of over 450,000 young people and 100,000 adult volunteers, supporting the organisation to increase its impact and profile in changing the lives of young people. Before this Liam was President of the National Union of Students in Scotland and UK wide.

Kayleigh Wainwright

Head of Membership & Policy, UK Youth.

Barry Williams

Barry has worked in the youth sector for 17 years and was appointed to the position of Director of Strategy & Policy for Ambition in October 2015. He has worked at Ambition supporting members since 2004, evolving the membership services within this time to increase strategic support, whilst increasing the income the Membership team secure. 

Ani Sutton

Development & Engagement Manager.

Lucie Unsworth

National Youth Engagement Manager

Last date edited: 22 May 2018