Youth Advisory Board

On Monday 6 November 2023, we launched the Doorstep Youth Advisory Board.

This has been a long-held organisational dream and wish – to ensure that young people’s voices can be right at the centre of the Doorstep’s decision-making, leadership and strategy. Big thanks to our funder, Arts Council England, for supporting and encouraging this kind of dynamic governance model.

As a participatory arts organisation, we believe fundamentally in the importance of youth voice and it’s taken a long time to get to a point where we can formally give this level of ownership, power and decision-making to young people, right at the heart of what we do.

We gathered with an amazing crew of 10 young people aged 14 to 20, and celebrated this launch together as a team. We listened to them each talk about why they’d like to serve as a Youth Co-Chair of Doorstep Arts. They were thoughtful, articulate, inspiring, amazing. It was clear how much they care about representing other young people, about making change, about having a real voice. We then held a democratic vote to elect the Youth Co-Chairs and celebrated the fact that all of these incredible activated young people will carry on as part of our Youth Advisory Board across the academic year 2023-24.

They will be supported by the three Doorstep Co-Directors (Polly, Jade & Erin) and their decision-making for the organisation will also be bolstered by the Adult Special Advisors who will continue to give support on budgets, finance, HR and other specialist topics.

The Youth Advisory Board will oversee artistic activity, help shape decisions, and monitor progress. They’ll make suggestions and propose new ideas, give insights and share perspectives as young people to shape the organisation. We are SO excited by this new way of working.

You can read more about Election Night here ➜ Youth Advisory Board Blog Post

Youth Co-Chairs

Holly Pearce

Holly (age 15)

Hi, I’m Holly – I’ve been with Doorstep for 7 years and I’m now a member of DYT.

Growing up in the theatre world, I’ve always been very passionate about young people’s opportunities in the arts which is why I am so grateful to be elected as co-chair and am looking forward to getting a taste as to what the advisory board is like.

Outside of drama, I love to read, write and bake!


Oscar Hannis Smith

Oscar (age 18)

My name is Oscar. I’m 18 and study acting at Exeter college, I believe acting, film and theatre are one of the greatest ways people can express themselves or view expression through art. This is why I love it so much, to convert a watcher into a different work, with circumstance and emotion different to that of their own world. I firmly believe that acting opportunities are minimal in the South West and therefore by being Co-Chair I am more in control of making this rare opportunity or doorstep a better experience for all who participate.

Em Angell

Em (age 18)

Hi, I’m Emaleigh.

I love Musical Theatre. I am currently a student at South Devon College where I am studying Performing Arts. I am planning to progress to university where I aim to study Musical Theatre.

I am pleased to be a co-chair for Doorstep Arts as I wish to provide a space which supports creativity without judgement.



Ivy (age 14)

Hi, I’m Ivy and I love drama and I always have. I’ve been with Doorstep for 7 years now and have seen all the different groups grow and develop.

Other than drama I love to play netball and do cadets and love
to bake.