Youth conference

Supporting ‘Better Tomorrows’ for Cumbria’s young people

A senior figure at the University of Cumbria is joining the steering group of the ‘Better Tomorrows’ programme. 

Dr Amanda Taylor-Beswick, director of Centre for Digital Transformation at the University of Cumbria, will represent the university as the programme continues to establish youth work training and opportunities to make a difference to the lives of the county’s young people now and in the future.

Amanda Taylor-Beswick

Better Tomorrows is spearheaded by David Beeby, High Sheriff of Cumbria 2021/22, in partnership with Cumbria Community Foundation, Cumbria Youth Alliance and the Francis C Scott Charitable Trust. 

A minimum of 100 people will access youth work training in Cumbria over a three-year period. In addition to the training programme grants of up to £25,000 per year for 3 years are available to community organisations where they will be providing youth work to more young people in Cumbria. 

Dr Taylor-Beswick said: “Given my background as a social worker and social sciences academic it is complete honour to be involved with the programme through the steering group. It is my hope that along with my digital expertise, my practice experiences, networks and co-produced research with young people will cumulate to further compliment the work going forward.  

“My first qualification was as a youth support worker in Northern Ireland during the height of ‘The Troubles’, a time when I myself was in receipt of a robust youth work provision. The spaces that youth workers created, whilst still separated across the divide, meant that we could ‘largely’ forget about what was happening outside the building and enjoy the activities. The value of youth work is embedded throughout the university's history and our involvement now means that it will be core within our future." 

David Beeby said “The legacy of this programme will be a new cohort of trained and motivated volunteers and paid professionals; additional youth provision will be established across the county and thousands of young people will benefit. 

David Beeby Better Tomorrows

“I am delighted to welcome Amanda, representing the University of Cumbria, on to the Better Tomorrows steering group. I set up the Better Tomorrows programme to reverse the decline in youth work in Cumbria. We know that quality youth work can make a real difference to young people’s lives and Better Tomorrows is funding a growth in youth workers and youth work across the County. It is important that we continue to develop youth work as an important profession and there is no doubt that the University of Cumbria can make a vital contribution to the career path for youth workers.” 

Vice Chancellor Professor Julie Mennell DL

University Vice Chancellor (and incoming Chair of Carlisle Youth Zone) Professor Julie Mennell said: “Our young people deserve the best possible support we can give them. They have huge potential and a critical role to play in our region’s future prosperity and well being. We are committed to doing all we can to support this aim and are very pleased to be part of the Better Tomorrows initiative. Working together, we can have so much more impact.


Notes to editors


1. Dr Amanda Taylor-Beswick, Director, Centre for Digital Transformation, University of Cumbria 

2.Professor Julie Mennell, Vice Chancellor, University of Cumbria 

3. David Beeby, High Sheriff of Cumbria 2021/22