The Funderstorm

Listen Up! In partnership with The People Speak has developed a democratic way of spending Youth Opportunities Funding that engages many more young people in the process of discussing, proposing and supporting projects.
The Funderstorm process uses deliberative discussion to discover and develop issues, democratic agenda-setting to vote on the most important ones, and ‘participatory budgeting’ to involve people in making funding decisions.

With a budget of £405,000 in it’s first year, Funderstorm was the UK’s largest participatory budgeting programme, and was, itself, run by a trained and expanding group of young people from Islington.

Funderstorm emphasises the dynamic, engaging and collaborative aspects of participatory budgeting, and by creating peer networks of young facilitators to involve other young people to bring in their agendas, ideas and enthusiasm.

Joining ‘Funderstorm’ was as simple and fun as having a conversation on a street corner, but opened up routes for everyone to get involved in proposing, voting on and enabling young people’s projects and ideas.

For the Fundrestorm project in Islington, Zsolti, our visualiser-in-chief been creating some heroes from photos (by Hektor and Ewelina) to advertise the opportunity to get involved to young people…

-To promote free, respectful, public discussion between young people.
-To enable and support a fair, democratic process for choosing ideas.
-To respectfully and inclusively support the equal participation of all Islington’s young people.

-Focus on fun, engaging formats to engage as many people as possible.
-Train young people to run and develop those formats themselves.
-Be consistent, organised and energetic in recruitment and promotion.
-Be clear and transparent about every part of the process.
-Review the our methods and goals in response to regular feedback.

The Structure
There are a few main stake-holder groups involved in the Funderstorm project:
-Young people.
-Youth organisations
-Service providers
-The Funderstorm Core Team
-Listen Up!
-The People Speak
-Young Facilitators (formerly the YOF panel)
-Living Lens

The Strategy




“The People Speak helped Islington create a new process and brand identity for the Youth Opportunities Fund – called ‘Funderstorm’. They worked really constructively with our corporate communications team to create an exciting, youth-focused logo and design for publicity materials. Their input was valuable in terms of helping to define and communicate how the process works and how young people can get involved. I found them to be really enthusiastic partners, with a dynamic, creative and professional approach.” Louise Brown, Senior Communications and Marketing Officer, Islington Council

One Response to “The Funderstorm”

  1. Alan says:

    We are now working with groups accross Britain to make the case for new and more Participatory Budgeting. Get in touch if you want to be part of the movement!

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