Who we are

Practical Participation is run by Tim Davies, Bill Badham and Jennie Fleming, working with a network of associate consultants.

Tim Davies

TimDaviesTim Davies has been exploring the intersection of youth engagement, social justice and social technologies for the last 10 years. Between 2003 and 2006 Tim was a part time trainer and consultant with The NYA, and in 2005 established Practical Participation as an independent limited company supporting youth participation through the effective use of technology. Tim graduated from Oxford University in 2006 with a BA in Politics, Philosophy and Economics, and, after a short time in which he was juggling work with The NYA, Practical Participation and as the marketing manager of a Fairtrade shop, Tim developed Practical Participation into a full time enterprise. Since then, Tim has been the lead researcher on the Youth Work & Social Networking Project, leading to the development of internationally recognised work on youth engagement and social media; and has  been actively exploring a wide range of innovative participation and technology projects. For the 2013/14 academic year Tim is a fellow at the Harvard Berkman Centre for Internet and Society, where he is working on democratic aspects of open data and open government.

Tim blogs here, and can also be found on Twitter.

Bill Badham

Picture 5From 1984 to 1999 Bill was involved in direct practice in probation, social care and community social work including national policy influence on groupwork with young offenders, preventative intervention and the role of the voluntary sector, leading the Nottingham Social Work voluntary sector specialism and co-writing the Open Learning Foundation modules on children and families.  Since 1999 Bill has been a national influence on young people’s participation including running a national programme across over 30 projects, being co-author of Hear by Right participation standards and author of Act by Right, skills for young people to help make change happen.  Bill led The NYA’s participation programme till September 2009, before becoming Co-Director of Practical Participation. He has extensive experience of undertaking a wide range training, consultancy and presentations across the statutory and voluntary sector with local and national partners.

You can find Bill on Twitter.

Jennie Fleming

Jennie for webpage (2a)Jennie has a particular interest in developing approaches that lead to learning, dialogue, action and change. Her experience includes participatory research, especially the involvement of young people, community members and service users in research in a range of social, community and organisational contexts. She has extensive experience working with public and voluntary sector institutions, multi-agency partnerships, NGOs, government departments and agencies in a wide range of participatory evaluation, research and change projects.

Jennie started working in youth, community and social work in both the voluntary and statutory sectors.  In the late 1990’s she started working at the Centre for Social Action at De Montfort University where she was Reader in Participatory Research and Social Action from 2011-13 and the Director of the Centre for 10 years.  She has worked on projects in the UK, USA, South Africa and Russia, Ukraine, Moldova and many other Eastern European countries.

She co-author of Empowerment in Action – self-directed groupwork, Supporting People towards Person Centred Support and co-edited Involving Children and Young People in Health and Social Care Research, as well as being a co-editor of Groupwork Journal .  She is also a Co-ordinator of Social Action Net, an umbrella organisation seeking to promote discuss and debate about the use of Social Action, participation and social justice.

You can find out more about Jennie’s academic work and publications at http://nottinghamtrent.academia.edu/JennieFleming

Find Jennie on Twitter


Our associates

Sarah Hargreaves

Sarah HargreavesSarah Hargreaves has helped people and organisations in the statutory and voluntary sectors to achieve their potential for over thirty years. She is committed to supporting leaders and managers to make a difference to the users of their services through their role with their colleagues.

Sarah joined Practical Participation as an Associate Consultant in 2014. She brings extensive experience of developing national policy for youth empowerment, supporting voluntary and statutory organisations to deliver effective youth led services, training both leaders and managers of youth services and trustees of charities, and of people and project management.

Sarah started her working life as a qualified social worker in local authority social services. She moved into youth work first at a local level leading a charity and then at national level. Sarah worked as a consultant and trainer in the statutory and voluntary sectors for hundreds of organisations first as co-founder of Framework, an independent network organisation, and then as Director of Programmes with FPM Training. From 2003 to 2010, she contributed to the creation of youth policy, focused mainly on the youth empowerment agenda, and its implementation at the National Youth Agency, first as Youth Matters Project Coordinator and then as National Policy Manager. From 2010-2014, Sarah was Principal Lecturer and Head of Youth, Community and Education Division at De Montfort University responsible for directly leading and managing over twenty colleagues and the experience of 600 students.


Alex Farrow

Alex Farrow has over six years experience working on youth participation and skills for young people. He spent 5 years working for the National Youth Agency working on, evaluating and developing plans for the participation of children and young people in decision making using Hear by Right. Until recently, Alex was Co-Director of the UK Youth Climate Coalition and over saw it’s development from a small, unfunded voluntary organisation to a organisation with over 50 volunteers and project funding.