Review by Penny Rabiger

Director of engagement, Lyfta Education

29 May 2021, 5:00


Penny’s Podcasts, 24 May 2021

This week, Penny Rabiger’s selection of podcasts hears the voices of young people on mental health, race, conflict, homelessness and campaigning for change


Are You Convinced? 


This new podcast series sees UK Youth CEO Ndidi Okezie and Teacher Tapp co-founder Laura McInerney taking on some meaty issues and trying to come at them from a different angle to each other.  

I have chosen the episode We still don’t know how to address youth mental health issuesfeaturing the Centre for Mental Health’s Kadra Abdinasir, with Mental Health Media Charter founder Natasha Devon. The panel discusses whether the system is too crisis-driven, how more opportunities need to be made to address inequalities in mental health for Black and Asian young people, as well as those that identify as LGBTQ+.  

Each episode also includes a young person’s view on the matter, and we hear from a 23-year-old medical student and a 20-year-old with experience of the mental health system. 


Becoming An Antiracist 


This podcast series is hosted by Dr Muna Abdi and looks at a range of topics around racism and anti-racism in education. The series aims to support teachers on their journey to becoming an antiracist. It offers a space to listen, reflect, engage and learn.  

I have chosen an episode which centres the voices of Black women and girls in the education system – voices that are often never asked for, or that are silenced. Their stories here highlight the lived reality of racism in the school system. It’s definitely worth a listen if you want to understand what school can be like for young people of colour. 



@skyler_inman via @intractableshow 

Having spent a decade in Jerusalem schools trying to bridge some of the divides in this challenging city, this podcast, in its very name, is close to my heart. Intractable is a storytelling podcast that combines history, news, personal narratives, expert interviews and audio artifacts to tell one of the most complex narratives of our time: the story of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.  

This episode is about the next generation and looks at the way young people communicate with one another amid this conflict. Host, Skyler Inman interviews an Israeli professor with a revolutionary idea, and sits in on an event that brings young women from Israel and the West Bank together for the task of finding a peaceful resolution to the conflict. In Jerusalem, she talks to parents and children at Hand in Hand, a groundbreaking school that envisions generational change through mixed Jewish-Arab education in Arabic and Hebrew.  

There’s something for each of us to learn here about education’s role in healing and recovery. 


Young and Homeless in These Covid Times  


During lockdown, 81 per cent more under-25s were sleeping rough in London compared with the same period last year. In this podcast, young people talk about the impact of having nowhere safe to stay. Their powerful, inspiring stories are packed with resilience, wisdom and thoughts on how to tackle youth homelessness.  

I’ve chosen Apple’s story: her immigration status means Apple can’t access benefits or housing. She explains how homelessness and having no recourse to public funds are affecting her mental health, and why counselling is so important to her.  

For all those working with young people who could be, or could end up, in the same situation, it’s so important to hear about the lived experience of the homeless and the hidden homeless.


We Can Change the World  


Ending on a delightful note, this BBC podcast focuses on ordinary young people who are achieving exceptional things in their communities – and even worldwide. Here, Isy Suttie hosts the amazing Amika George. When Amika found out girls were skipping lessons because of their periods, she created an online petition demanding free menstrual products for all girls on free school meals. A media storm and 275,000 signatures later, the government committed funding to tackle the issue.  

If you think small acts don’t make a difference, this podcast is the inspiration you need. 

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