From Hastings to Number 10 Downing Street

Sixth form, Hastings, school, Downing Street

An insightful day at Parliament

I was invited to be part of the International Women’s Day celebration on the 12th of March 2015. I, and seventy two other girls, was invited to Parliament for the day. Our time was spent with our respective MPs and their departmental staff.   

We all met outside Portcullis House and from there we were taken to Number 10 Downing Street, where we were given a tour of the house and taught about the its history. We went on a tour of the Houses of Parliament and had an opportunity to watch a debate take place in the House of Commons on female genital mutilation (FGM). Following this we spent the day with an MP and their team.  

I visited the Department of Energy and Climate Change where I was introduced to a team of workers who, to my surprise, were actually very young. They spent a couple of hours showing me around, answering all of my questions and even asking me a few of their own. They asked about my opinions and how I would deal with the issues they were facing within their Department and also general political affairs as well.  

I was then taken to meet Elisha, an MP’s personal assistant. She gave me a tour of where she worked; allowed me to ask questions and let me carry out a couple of basic tasks. I was thrilled to receive an invite to the Houses of Parliament to complete a week long internship. The day ended with a delicious afternoon tea held at Mr Speaker’s house. 

For me, the day was very insightful, as it showed me that not only can women go far in politics, young people can too. Some of the people working in the House of Commons were in their early to mid-twenties, something I wasn’t expecting. This has been a beneficial and rewarding experience and it has given me a real insight into how politics works. I will also have the opportunity to go back and work in the Houses of Parliament for a week, which will no