Unheard Voices Logo

Unheard Voices is our major new research project

We are amplifying the stories and views of disadvantaged young people to engage, inform and assist those in power to create a more equal society.

Unheard Voices launches with a survey of 2,000+ young people, including 1,000 from low-income backgrounds

We heard stories of resilience, creativity, and frustration that government does not understand what low-income young people need to thrive.

In response, we have published a new Youth Manifesto to hold the government to account ahead of the 2021 Autumn Budget and beyond.

We also detail how employers can take action to help build a more equal society.

It’s time to prioritise disadvantaged young people.



Restore funding to the most deprived secondary schools

We face a crisis in education. Now is the time to invest and not shy away from the reality of lost time in the classroom.


Create a Youth Minister to sit across the Departments for Levelling Up, Housing and Community; Education; and Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy

Young people do not believe they are prioritised or that government understands their needs.


Provide free public transport to all under 25s who are not in employment, education or training

Everyone deserves the opportunity to pursue their dream career. They need to have access to work experience and be able to afford to get there.


Make apprenticeships salaries a living wage

Our data shows higher-income young people are more likely to consider an apprenticeship than low-income young people.  Higher wages are vital to ensure apprenticeships are open to all.


Commit to providing all pupils with access to a device and an internet connection by 2023

Young people need digital tools to thrive in education and at work.

I aim to pursue a degree in politics for my undergraduate and later pursue a masters in history.

My Social Mobility Foundation mentor has been amazing by offering virtual placements that truly give you an insight into what you want to do. I feel more confident now that I have mentors who will support and guide me as I go through the process.

Aklema, Birmingham

For apprenticeships, there aren’t options that offer the same flexibility as degree would. I could get an apprenticeship attached to a certain organisation with high chance of employment in that organisation after completion, however that credit may not be transferable to other firms, leaving me disadvantaged compared to peers who have degrees.

Goose, Manchester

The greatest challenge for young people like me is finding opportunities that are easily accessible and the career that I want.

For example, finding design opportunities as well as music opportunities from actual companies in the industries has been difficult for me.

My school gives me some opportunities monthly but they don’t really offer the ones I’m looking for – perhaps because some businesses don’t give any. I think that might be a problem.

Kimberly, Birmingham