Commonwealth Ambassadors aim to create lasting legacy

Comhairle Leader Norman A Macdonald and Islands Legacy Leader Iain GG Campbell with Ambassadors John, Tearlach, Eleanor, Sarah and Peter.
Comhairle Leader Norman A Macdonald and Islands Legacy Leader Iain GG Campbell with Ambassadors John, Tearlach, Eleanor, Sarah and Peter.

Bringing the spirit of the 2014 Commonwealth games to the Western Isles, the Youth Legacy Ambassadors for the islands are finally announced.

The five specially selected 5th year Nicolson pupils - John Maciver, Tearlach Barden, Eleanor Smith, Sarah Macleod and Peter Macdonald - have all been recruited as part of the Youth Legacy Ambassadors programme.

All of those involved are 16 years old, apart from Tearlach who won’t officially be 16 until next month.

‘Youth Legacy Ambassadors’ have been recruited from all across Scotland and will play a crucial role in the run up to the 2014 Commonwealth games.

By becoming Commonwealth Games Youth Legacy Ambassadors the group have the opportunity to make a long-lasting, positive difference in their community.

Sarah Macleod, said: “I am very excited about being selected for the Youth Ambassador Programme and I can’t wait to get started!”

Peter Macdonald added: “I am excited and interested to see how it’s going to work and how we’re going to plan everything out.”

This exciting opportunity will help Scotland take advantage of its role as host nation, by building a legacy for its future.

The ‘legacy’ is made up of four themes young people, and the Ambassadors will promote these themes to people throughout their local authority for two years.

Peter said: “It’s really good for Scotland to be doing something big like this, especially after the Olympics.”

The Youth Legacy Ambassadors will work in teams, of at least four, to develop their own role to promote the Legacy themes and can be as creative and imaginative as they like.

Sarah said the group have lots of different ideas on how to achieve this, and that she is excited for their first group meeting later this week.

The Youth Legacy Ambassador Programme allows young people to play an active role in helping to promote the legacy themes to their peers and other people in their local communities, raising awareness of the Commonwealth Games and helping to promote specific legacy campaigns.

Sarah said: “I feel really privileged and proud that Glasgow are hosting the Games this year. It’s a fantastic opportunity for our country.”

The programme is run by Young Scot, in partnership with the Scottish Government. Young Scot are working with young people across Scotland to promote a lasting legacy for the Commonwealth Games with the purpose of inspiring and engaging young people to make the most out of hosting the Games.

Sarah said she wanted to get involved with the programme because it sounded like an “exciting, once in a lifetime opportunity.”

The Eilean Siar Youth Legacy Ambassadors recently took part in Ambassador training and discussed ways to inspire and encourage people in the local community to become more involved in 2014.

The group also met with Iain GG Campbell, Legacy Lead for Eilean Siar, who they will work with to promote the themes of the Commonwealth Games: Active, Sustainable, Connected and Flourishing.

Sarah said she is most of all looking forward to all the events they will be organising and all the exciting opportunities and trips nearer the time of the Games.

Throughout the programme the young people involved will be encouraged to work towards their Youth Achievement Award, as a single challenge or a whole award.

The level of award for the Island Ambassadors will either be Silver or Bronze, depending on each Young Ambassador’s contribution, so their time and commitment will be formally recognised.

The group is supported by the Youth Engagement Team, Community Learning and Development.

The Western Isles Youth Engagement Project is funded by the Scottish Government and European Community Leader Innse Gall 2007-2013 programme, Comhairle nan Eilean Siar and Highlands and Islands Enterprise.