creative conversations with Portland young people

27 Feb

Welcome to episode fifteen of creative conversations. This week I change tack in my conversation focus and talk to two young people at Portland Youth Club.

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Right click (or Ctrl click on a Mac) on this link (Creative Conversations #15) to download (Save Link As). Or subscribe to our podcast, or subscribe via iTunes to have it automatically appear in your inbox.

This conversation came about while I was working on a film project for PVA MediaLab. In the research we had been told about the so-called ‘Portland Riots’, that had made front page of the Echo in January 2011. The paper had reported “A ‘MINI-RIOT’ broke out on Portland when police tried to disperse a group of 50 teenagers.”

During my conversation with two young people from Portland Youth Club we hear their views on what happened that night and how they feel misrepresented by the media. That the media are always blowing up negative stories and giving them big headlines, while the stories about the good stuff is hidden away inside in a small paragraph. That the bad stuff sells newspapers and the good stuff doesn’t.

It is interesting to hear them talk about the lack of things to do for their age. That younger people have activities and adults have places to go, but that they can’t go into pubs and clubs and everywhere else is closed. So they end up hanging around in public spaces and being youthful with a bit of energy tend to cause a bit of noise. They felt that if the police had talked to them and asked them to calm down a bit they’d have understood and would have quietened down. But they, the police, didn’t handle the situation very well.

I ask them what they think the older generation did when they were young? It is interesting hearing them talk about the older generation. Hearing them talk about the lack of respect they feel they get. That they are told to respect their elders, but this is not a two way street.

They would welcome greater dialog between them and older people and between them and the police. That more opportunities should be available for generations to be together in a social setting. Be nice to speak to them and for them to each see and hear them as people, that they aren’t as bad as they are portrayed.

We hear about some of the great work that goes on at Portland Youth Club and the friendly staff that works there. With the drop in only open two nights a week.

“You are only young once.” Older people tend to forget about what they did when they were young. But also they have learnt from their experience and don’t want the young people to make the same mistakes, but it comes across as criticism and isn’t helpful.

I am going to take a breather from putting together these shows for a bit while i evaluate how they have gone. Please do get in touch with any thoughts about the show. Let me know if you have found them worthwhile or not and if you have any thoughts about who else might be valuable for me to talk to.


One Response to “creative conversations with Portland young people”


  1. creative conversations episodes « creative conversations - May 9, 2012

    […] I change tack in my conversation focus and talk to two young people at Portland Youth Club. we hear their views of two young people from Portland Youth Club. […]

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