Bol’s Youth Membership Boost

Olympic star Peter Bol plans to spend time at juvenile justice centers to work with troubled youngsters.

Sudanese-born Bol shot to fame as Australia’s fastest ever 800m athlete at the Tokyo Olympics last year.

Now Bol has revealed he is joining a Melbourne-based charity in a bid to make a difference off the track.

“Next year we’ll be breaking records on the track, but I think I’m more excited about breaking records outside of it,” Bol said.

“One of them is the youth justice system*. We want to get out there, get our hands dirty, and not just talk about it, but mentor* people, be with people, listen to people, listen to their stories.”

Bol hopes to offer mentorship, workshops and practical advice through his new role as Youth Activating Youth Ambassador*.

Too many young people from multicultural* backgrounds lack a sense of belonging, he said.

“When you share your voice, you feel like you belong,” he said. “People listen to you and you are listened to. You are able to contribute much more.

YAY, led by 2022 Young Victorian of the Year Ahmed Hassan, promotes opportunities for multicultural children rather than focusing on the “cycle of disadvantage”.

Mr. Hassan said Bol embodied* inspiration and hope.

“The work he’s going to do with us is to help the most vulnerable young people*, those people who continue to end up in the justice system, those people who continue to be at risk of coming into contact with the system. of criminal justice,” Mr. Hassan said.

“What drives Peter is how do you break the cycle, how do you not see young people who feel like they don’t belong?”

Mr Hassan said troubled youth, including members of the African community, needed encouragement, inspiration and leadership from people who understood them.

“It’s seeing Peter Bol,” he said.

“The work he has done – the hard work – a lot of people find that inspirational. A lot of young people look up to him.”

Bol, who said he approached YAY and asked for a role in his mission, was excited to use his profile for societal change.

“It’s time to make some real changes off the track,” he said. “We focus more on the opportunities we can bring, like bringing the community together.

“For the community to grow, for Australia to grow, we have to work together.”


  • Justice: system of laws and rules designed to protect society
  • mentor: adviser, guide, adviser, a positive influence
  • ambassador: someone who represents an organization, group, activity or brand
  • multicultural: relating to different cultures, traditions, religions and races of people
  • disadvantage: circumstances that reduce a person’s chances of safety and prosperity
  • embodied: represents particular qualities or ideas
  • vulnerable: needing special care due to age, disability, or risk of abuse or neglect


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  1. When did Peter Bol become famous and why?
  2. Who is the 2022 Young Victorian of the Year?
  3. Bol becomes an ambassador of which organization?
  4. Where is the association based?
  5. Who does Bol hope to help and why?


1. What can be done?
Write down a list of things that you think make some people feel out of place. For each item on your list, write down practical ways to change it or what could be done to fix the problem.

Weather: allow 15 minutes for this activity
Curriculum links: English; Personal and social capacity; Civic education and citizenship

2. Extension
Who inspires you? Write a Kids News article about this person. This can be a well-known person or someone from your school, family or community. The purpose of your article is to help Kids News readers understand what is so awesome and inspiring about your chosen person.

Weather: allow 40 minutes for this activity
Curriculum links: English; Personal and social capacity

Everyone matters!
Have you ever felt like you didn’t matter or didn’t belong? Maybe it was just for a while, maybe it’s been a while. Well, I’m here to say that everyone matters, even if sometimes you don’t feel like it. Peter Bol thinks so too.

“What drives Peter is how do you break the cycle, how do you not see young people who feel like they don’t belong?”

Sometimes when you feel like nothing matters or nobody cares, you can act out and misbehave. This behavior can get you in trouble, and sometimes that trouble can land you in juvenile detention (youth jail, basically). Peter wants to help prevent young people from going overboard and getting into trouble.

You can help too.

Think of a time when you felt like you didn’t belong, or maybe you wished you didn’t exist. Maybe you were embarrassed and wished you could just disappear. Maybe you were bullied or made a mistake that you wish you could take back. That might sound pretty silly.

What helps you feel better?

Try making a list of at least three things that make you feel better when you feel upset or worthless.

Join three other people and collect all your ideas on a poster to display in the school bathroom to help give others a list of ideas that might help them if they are also feeling upset.

Add a wellness paragraph to the poster to help tell them they matter too.

Don’t forget to proofread your poster to make sure it makes sense and to check that it’s clear.

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