SCHOOLCHILDREN and students are being urged to step forward and help make the region one of the "best places to grow up in".

Young people with a passion to make a difference are being urged to get involved with the Greater Manchester Youth Combined Authority (GMYCA) and advise the region's Metro Mayor.

The GMYCA was the first Youth Combined Authority in the country, and the model is now being replicated across the UK.

In its first two years, GMYCA members have been central to the development of policies, strategies and decisions on a number of the city-region’s issues, and have given young people in Greater Manchester a powerful and influential voice. Key achievements include:

•Developing Our Pass, the city-region’s free bus pass for 16 to 18-year olds, including social and leisure benefits

•Presenting at Youth Select Committees on Curriculum for Life and Knife Crime

•Speaking at the Northern Power Futures Conference and two Conferences of the North

•Opening the Green Summit and taking part in a question and answer session on stage with the Mayor

•Co-hosting the Meet Your Future launch event in April 2019

The GMYCA is made up of 40 young people aged 11-18, from across 20 different youth organisations within the city-region.

Member organisations serve a two-year term, and Greater Manchester Mayor Andy Burnham is now seeking applications from youth organisations who are keen to get involved and become members.

He said: “A couple of years ago I decided to set up the Greater Manchester Youth Combined Authority because I wanted to give our young people a voice and to be at the heart of devolution in Greater Manchester. But I also wanted them to have decision-making power and they have used that brilliantly on developing Our Pass.

They’ve done a fantastic job, they’ve made a real difference.”

For full details visit or attend an information session on Friday, October 18 by registering a/