YOUNG people have been out and about very visibly supporting our community.
Youngsters have been selling tickets and shaking the charity buckets at fireworks displays. They have marched with colleagues at the Remembrance services, carrying colours and demonstrating respect to the fallen and injured heroes of our wars.
Others are helping at church Christmas sales for charity. Many we don’t see quietly support family as child carers or work on environmental projects or save their own pocket money for a good cause.
But this has not been a good week for young people. Students are waiting to hear if university fees will double. Record numbers of school and university graduates are failing to find work. In this recession young people have been hit the hardest and the employment picture for those just finishing their education is forecast to stay bleak until 2013.
The Government is also considering a roll-back of its promises of support for apprenticeships and training. Banks have no interest in financing a young person who tries to be an entrepreneur.
If we allow our young people to become unemployed and demoralised they will become utterly disillusioned.
Some organisations are at least offering young people voluntary work to strengthen a CV and provide work experience. Mums and dads are allowing young people to stay living at home, but surely we can do more.
Just a small part of the economic stimulus which we are putting into 'quantitative easing' could surely go on paid internships to keep young people progressing.
The apprenticeship and training programmes long promised should be fully funded even at a time of budgetary pressure. And surely we who benefited so much from a free university education could commit as my party, the Liberal Democrats, has done to abolishing student tuition fees.