We held our first unconference on Friday and it was a great way to finish a busy September! In case you missed the hype, an unconference is a participant-driven event that gives people the space to focus on issues that matter to them. More on that later. This blog will give you the low down of the day and insight into some of the discussions.

NKBL team member Jane kicked off the day talking about the NKBL prevention approach and the ‘4 Rs’. Next, we introduced Will Linden, Deputy Director of Violence Reduction Unit, who gave us a provocative input on re-thinking prevention and changing knife crime culture in Scotland.

Then we moved into the core part of the unconference. We started the day with a blank agenda and gave attendees the power to choose all nine sessions that ran during the day. Ideas were definitely not in short supply and a sea of Post-Its appeared on the wall. Topics ranging from cybercrime to working with limited resources, and gaining buy-in from local communities were suggested. The NKBL team grouped similar ideas and then it was time to vote.

Within 30 minutes we had successfully built a full and interested agenda from scratch. A pretty impressive feat for a Friday morning!

The nine interactive discussions were lively and certainly covered a lot of ground. We won’t be doing a detailed run-down here on the blog but the NKBL team will be following up on issues raised throughout the remainder of the year.

We ended the day with the NKBL play that is touring secondary schools across Scotland. Ashleigh, Daniel and Maddie delivered a powerful performance that drew rave reviews from the audience. You can read more about the play here.

And just like that our first unconference came to a close. Were you at the event? Would you be interested in trying the unconference format again? We’d love to hear your thoughts. You can share them on social media using #unconfNKBL or drop us an email nkbl@youthlinkscotland.org.

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