Campaign Trail

Campaign Trail UK is a nationwide multi-media project supported by the Paul Hamlyn Foundation that enables young parents – young mums and young dads – to speak out about their lives and the challenges they face – who they are, how they feel and the issues that matter to them.

With support from experienced media producers, a series of creative workshops enable the participants to develop their skills in using digital photography, film, video archive, research and written texts to produce imaginative digital content for their peer to peer education projects, public awareness and community campaigns, for others to learn from.

Their powerful and moving images, produced as posters, video and digital content are used within education, public exhibition, health, online, broadcast and community settings to influence and inspire their peers to make informed parenting, sexual health and relationship choices. Over the past two years Campaign Trail has worked in partnership with projects in the Northumberland, Cumbria, Teesside and Yorkshire regions.

In Northumberland, young parents from Northumberland Care Trust’s ‘Been There, Done That!’ Peer Education programme are campaigning for better SRE in schools and community settings and have produced short films and posters to use in peer education workshops. Their aim is to give young people the skills and information to make informed decisions about their sexual health and relationship choices and to support professionals in setting up peer education programmes in different areas of the northeast.

The Surestart ‘Yummy Mummy’s’ Group at The Clarences Community Centre, Stockton on Tees have used photography to research and explore their local area, creating an audio show reel and a series of poster images to communicate the issues affecting young parents living within an isolated community like theirs.

At Health for All, Leeds, young parents from ‘The Boost Group’ have used photography and archive research to explore the experiences of young families from past to present and the challenges they have faced and overcome. The posters they have produced will be used in local schools to inspire their peers – young parents and young parents to be – to be positive about their own futures and become strong role models for their own children and families.

“Many people think that when you have a baby so young it has ruined your life or that you are unable to achieve your dreams and ambitions but that’s just not true. Our project ‘Future Me’ intends to challenge those preconceptions and help give us a better chanc efor a positive future.’

A peer education media and public awareness project for Campaign Trail UK by young mothers from The Getaway Girls in Leeds; raising awareness of the experiences and challenges faced by young women who become teenage mothers, focusing on; relationships, education, housing, employment and childcare. The young mums produced short films and posters to use in peer to peer education.

In Cumbria, young parents from the Project John Housing Action Project and Action For Children’s ‘Young Parents two Be’ and ‘Parents with Prospects’ projects in Barrow in Furness have designed – ‘What Makes a Mum?’ – a series of short films and poster images to promote positive parenting amongst their peers; using their own experiences to create strong visual messages to share with their peers about the ups and downs of becoming a parent when you are a teenager.


A new campaign for Campaign Trail UK, led by young father’s from Northumberland’s ‘Let’s Work’ project in partnership with Northumberland Teenage Pregnancy Team. They are producing resources to support their peer education programme and influence young men’s lives; focusing on issues of access, social exclusion, self-esteem and being a good father.

A number of creative workshops held over a 6-8 week period covered research, production of films, images and text, post production and exhibition planning. Each of the groups develop digital media and communication skills, helping the participants to become confident producers, in creating films, images and campaigns that effectively communicates their personal messages.

Research Workshops gave participants the opportunity to look at archive material held within county records and online databases to research and identify the experiences of young parents. The groups then develop and collate their own ideas and experiences to present in films, images and campaigns.

A young mum at the Northumberland Archives, Woodhorn Museum

Production Workshops supported the groups in using digital imaging and video to record aspects of their daily lives relating to their experiences of being a young parent to create their own short films and images.  For example In Teesside, participants from the Yummy Mummys Project engaged in a series of location based, mapping projects, using digital imaging to record and document key ‘journey’s’ reflecting on their own personal experiences and highlighting key locations that relate to their public awareness campaign for Campaign Trail UK – Hope Street.

Post Production Workshops involved producing content for the pan-regional and national events. The groups were actively involved in the planning of these events and exhibitions to present their work and campaigns.

CTUK and its work aim to make a positive contribution to the on-going national debates, media representation and policy solutions for the next generation. Through a number of successful events across the UK the participants have been able to present their messages and work to the public.

Campaign Trail Launch – Newcastle City Library; 29th October 2010
A Pan-regional event held at to launch the end of the CTUK’s first year. The event brought together representatives from participating groups who presented their poster images and a series of short videos produced for their distinct projects and campaigns.

We Are Here/Campaign Trail UK Exhibition Launch – 12 Star Gallery, Europe House, London; 16th February 2011
At the opening event for the ‘Campaign Trail UK/We Are Here – Young People Speak Out’ Exhibition, project participants from Barrow in Furness and Northumberland presented their work and spoke publicly about their lives and experiences to an influential audience including leading figures such as Dame Clare Tickell, the CEO of Action for Children.

Project John Launch – The Forum, Barrow-In-Furness; 19th January 2011
At this launch event for Barrow-In-Furness; What Makes a Mum? Project, participants premiered their short films and poster images. This was also a chance to share their experiences and support other young mums and young mums to be in their local area.

Selected work from the campaigns was displayed on a number of bus stop billboards throughout the Westminster area in London.


The films created by the young mums from Barrow in Furness and Northumberland featured as a single programme broadcast over 3 days, on The Community Channel.

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