Youngsters taking part in a programme of community action got the chance to quiz Sheffield MP David Blunkett.
Around 60 young people aged 15 to 17 taking part in South Yorkshire charity Groundwork’s National Citizenship Programme had a talk and question and answer session from the politician as part of their three-week course.
The NCS programme is administered by The Football League Trust in partnership with sports organisations across Sheffield such as Groundwork, Sheffield Wednesday and Sheffield United.
This year more than 1,000 young people in the city have been taking part in the scheme, the teenagers spending a week in the countryside, a week managing their finances in university accommodation, and a week giving back to the community through social action projects.
The youngsters were given the talk by Mr Blunkett at Sheffield Hallam University where they asked him about his career in politics and the challenges he faced as a blind MP.
Spokesman for The Football League Trust, John Hill, said: “A lot of the young people were asking more intelligent questions than I could come up with! They were brilliant, talking about the EU, UKIP, a whole range of issues.
“They even asked about phone hacking, which he didn’t shirk away from. He said, ‘I’m glad I did what I did’. And they were inspired by David’s stories about his fight to overcome barriers due to his blindness.
“It was a really engaging session and I think it has inspired them to do something for their communities.”
Groundwork is an environmental charity which works in the community and reduces energy and waste.
Spokesman Chris Hill said: “It’s really important young people get these experiences. It gives them a sense of responsibility, almost like seeing them go from young people to young adults.”