The Birmingham Commission for Children explored children’s lives and well-being in the city, gathering as many opinions as possible.

five children meet with the leader of the Birmingham Commission for Children

Five children discuss ideas with Janet Grauberg,
chair of the Birmingham Commission for Children

The Birmingham Commission for Children, which was run by The Children’s Society, was made up of five members. Over June and July 2014 they heard from children, parents, communities and leaders in Birmingham and have produced a final report. This independent report examines what life should be like for children and young people in Birmingham in ten years’ time and how the city council and other organisations might go about making their vision for Birmingham’s young people a reality.

We work in Birmingham to help decision makers in the city listen to children and young people and propose recommendations about improving children’s lives and well being in the city. Decisions about youth clubs, new schools, transport routes, park upkeep and the support available to children and young people can all have significant impacts on their lives, but often they never get the chance to have their say.

We listened to children’s voices in a number of different ways. Working with our partner organisation the Innovation Unit, we heard the voices of communities in Sparkbrook and LongbridgeAll of the voices of children in the city, the in-depth work with communities and seven commission meetings were fed into the Birmingham Commission for Children.

Also, don't miss our interactive timeline of how the Birmingham Commission for Children heard the voices of children in the city.

UK Youth Parliament members take part in the Birmingham Commission for Children

Commission's meetings

The Commission completed a series of public meetings, and details can be found below. Their final report will be publishing in the autumn.

11 June
Topic: An introduction to Birmingham: Its opportunities and challenges
Read the meeting highlights

26 June
Topic: The relationship between schools, the council and children’s outcomes
Read the meeting highlights

4 July 
Topic: Early years and early intervention in the city
Read the meeting highlights

8 July
Topic: Birmingham’s children and their health and well-being
Read the meeting highlights

15 July 
Topic: The big issues faced by young people and their solutions
Read the meeting highlights

21 July 
Topic: The aspirations of young people in the city
Read the meeting highlights

28 July
Topic: Supporting Birmingham’s children: Communities, partners and leadership
Read the meeting highlights

Who is on the commission? 

Janet Grauberg was the independent chair of the Birmingham Commission for Children. Janet was formerly Director of Strategy for Barnardo’s, an adviser at the Department for Education and Lead Cabinet Member for Children’s Services at Camden Council. 

Christine Davies is the former Chief Executive of the Centre for Excellence and Outcomes and is currently a trustee for the Early Intervention Foundation. She led the previous Government’s 'Narrowing the Gap' national programme and was the Director of Children’s Services at Telford & Wrekin Council for ten years.

David Hughes has taught at and led schools in Cambridgeshire, Cheshire, Nottinghamshire and the West Midlands.  His interest in science and technology has seen him engage with the Learning and Skills Council and work with many local authorities on school leadership.

Dr Angela Donkin is the Deputy Director at the Institute of Health Equity.  Before joining the institute Angela was the senior civil servant responsible for overseeing the independent reviews on Early Intervention in the Cabinet Office. 

Jehangir Malik is the UK Director of Islamic Relief. He has worked with local communities and in the international charity sector for over 20 years in a number of countries including the USA, UK and Afghanistan.