The people of South Tyneside can get a fascinating insight into the workings of their local Council next week with the return of National Democracy Week.
The annual week-long celebration of democracy will run from Monday 14 October until Friday 18 Octoberand aims to raise awareness of local authorities and encourage communities to think about and engage with democracy and local decision-making.
South Tyneside Council is marking the week with a number of different events to bring people of all ages and backgrounds together.
Some of the events happening throughout the week include an Intergenerational Debate, special Town Hall tours and the chance for a young person to shadow the Mayor for the day.
Councillor Tracey Dixon, Deputy Leader for South Tyneside Council with responsibility for Democratic Renewal, said: "It is important that children and young people in the Borough understand how their local authority works as democracy is something that affects everyone.
"We promote democracy all year-round but during National Democracy Week we try to find new ways of challenging people into thinking more about how this plays such an important role within our community.
"Our events are always extremely popular and offer something for everyone."
Tours of South Shields Town Hall will take place during the week where visitors can hear all about the fascinating past of this historical building. The tours will be hosted by the Mayor of South Tyneside, Councillor Norman Dick, and will be taking place on Tuesday 15 October at 2 - 3.30pm, Thursday 17 October at 6 - 7.30pm and Friday 18 October at 2 - 3.30pm.
Booking is required for this free event as places are limited. Slots will be allocated on a first come first served basis and can be reserved by contacting Aisling Crane on (0191) 424 7003 or emailing email@example.com
The Intergenerational Debate will take place on Wednesday 16 October from 6 - 8.00pm in the Council Chamber of South Shields Town Hall. Local residents are encouraged to get involved as members of the young people's parliament and older residents debate and discuss topics such as 'Should younger people's votes count more on issues with long-term implications?'. Contact Aisling Crane on (0191) 242 7003 to reserve a place in the debate or simply attend the public gallery at 6.00pm if you would like to watch the debate take place.
There will also be a Staryland Democracy Simulation event taking place on Wednesday 16th October at 9.00am - 12.00pmin the Reception Room at South Shields Town Hall. This is an immersive, interactive educational session teaching primary school children from across the Borough about the benefits of voting and democracy.
Children from Westoe Crown Primary School will also be visiting the Town Hall on Tuesday 15 October to go on a tour of the building and participate in a fun democracy quiz.
Members of the public are also welcome to attend a number of Community Area Forums (CAFs) which are taking place during the week. The next Hebburn CAF will be held on Monday 14 October at 10.00am at Hebburn Central and the Jarrow and Boldon CAF will take place on Thursday 17 October at 10.00am at Jarrow Town Hall.
CAFs promote and champion community engagement across South Tyneside and give residents the chance to find out what is happening in their area and have their say on issues that are being discussed.
For further information about how to get involved in local democracy contact South Tyneside Council's Democratic Services Team on 0191 427 7000 or email firstname.lastname@example.org