Our Patron at Citizenship 4 Life

Terry Waite, CBE

‘Citizenship’ as a word on a school curriculum can seem to be a terribly dull subject. It has been said that it is one of the subjects that is taught with the least enthusiasm and imagination by teachers across the British Isles. Thank goodness things are different in Cornwall! It has been amply demonstrated that taught properly, citizenship education can and does provide an essential basis for young people about to enter the world from the limited environment of school. Some youngsters are fortunate. They have parents who have the resources to travel widely and give their children access to a extensive variety of civic and cultural activities. My own grandchildren are fortunate in this respect in that they have parents,both of whom are teachers and as they live in London have been introduced from a very early age to a wide variety of experiences denied to their counterparts in more remote areas. In Cornwall where there are many isolated towns and villages it is both expensive and time consuming to give children a breadth of experience of the world. Television is no substitute. Actually visiting a centre for the homeless,(as young people on the programme have done),and listening to a first hand account of what it means to be without shelter brings home  the reality of the world in a way that no radio or TV programme can.

As President of the programme I am proud to be associated with a scheme that frankly is streets ahead of activities in other parts of the country. This is due to the imagination and flair of the leaders of the course and also to those business firms who have had the foresight to sponsor the programme.

If you are new to Citizenship may I encourage you to find out more and see if you can play some role in helping the young people of Cornwall have opportunities for the future. Not only is this programme in the best interests of Cornwall. It is vital to the development of the UK as we all move into a new and exciting era.

– Terry Waite CBE