1 The future and you
In previous sessions you listened to the boys talk about the Shankill community they love, and why they thought young people had rioted. You also heard them question if rioting was the best way to get their voice heard. In the aftermath of the riots nothing had changed politically. Some young people had been arrested. Many young people – especially boys – including those not involved in the riots, also found the community looked upon them negatively as troublemakers or young ‘hoods’.
When the boys making this course first met William after the riots, he asked them a number of questions. For example, what did they think was the end game [goal] for young people who took part in the riots and violence; what did they as young people want to say as they all said they wanted a voice; and what were their hopes from taking part in the course with William? In between the banter, the boys had lots of opinions and hopes too for changing how others saw them.
The boys were particularly concerned with how they were seen now in their community. But they were not sure how they could change things. To help them with this William asked them what they wanted for themselves and how they saw themselves in their future. Now let’s join the boys as they revisit these questions and explore their aspirations (what they hope for).
Activity 1: Hopes for the future
Watch Video 1 and then try this activity for yourself.
Write down what you want for your future in the boxes below. Let your imagination run free. Think of these as goals or aspirations for your life, that you can work towards. You will be able to save this document to look at or work on again later.
|Where would you like to live and why?|
|What job would you like to do and why?|
|What are your hobbies and interests?|
|Are there any places you’d like to visit?|
|What qualities would you like people to see in you?|
Depending on how you are feeling and how much thinking you have done so far, this might have been an easy or difficult task. Don’t worry if you struggled to imagine your future. This is something you will be able to revisit at the end of this session as you develop your creative thinking skills and use your imagination to think about different possibilities and futures.
What you want for your future will be personal to you. In this activity you might have said you wanted to continue to live in your local area and bring change to your community. Or you might want to live in another city or country, or travel the world. You might want to go to university or be a street artist or run your own food business. You might want people to see you as someone who is independent minded or kind or trustworthy or courageous. Or you might have struggled to think of things that took you beyond what you already know or see around you or what others expect of you.
It is often easy to identify what you don’t want, but harder to know what you do want or to imagine something different and how to achieve this. This is where you can use your skills of reflection, critical thinking, and your imagination too, to deepen your understanding of your situation and to create different choices. Let’s look at how you can you come up with alternative possibilities, to help you decide what to do in the situations you face.