Anna Firth’s Work 2023 Work Experience Programme has got off to a fantastic start, and has seen students tackle a beach clean-up along the beachfront today. The programme, which takes fifteen local students behind the scenes of life as an MP, aims to give students a comprehensive view of all aspects of an MP’s work and to give them an insight into the world of politics as they begin to make decisions about A Levels, university and beyond. It offers a deep dive into constituency work, before heading up to Westminster at the end of next week. It has seen the students tackle a litter pick along the seafront as part of a drive to build a cleaner and safer Southend, and they will also be able to participate in a formal debate in order to build their public speaking skills, as well as allowing them to build their familiarity with Anna and the world of local and national politics. The litter pick in particular has been a huge success, and has allowed them to develop their sense of the crucial community-mindedness essential for life as an MP, as well as leaving the local area looking very beautiful. The students, aged between fifteen and eighteen, will also be able to accompany Anna to events, such as the Community Champion Prize Giving this week, and to a ‘Pop In’ Tea at the Chalkwell Synagogue. Having established a base in the constituency, they will then head up to Westminster at the end of next week to see the London side of the job before the House begins to sit again. They have also had the opportunity for Q&As with all members of the team, and can take their knowledge with them as they go on to take the next steps in their ambitions.
Anna Firth MP said: 'This is a fantastic opportunity for me to get to know the students of Southend West and learn from them about the issues that they think are the most important for our amazing city. We have done so much this week, and I am even more excited for next week.’ ‘I have been so impressed by the engagement and motivation from our students this year, who I am sure will be the politicians and change-makers of the next generation. I hope to see them in the Commons in the future!’