Youth energy and ideas pave the way for a better future

Over 100 local young people shared a range of creative ideas and started working on solutions for a better life in the county at the Bega Valley Youth Forum.

The Youth Forum was a mix of guided discussions and fun activities for local high school students and out-of-school youth aged 12-24.

The themes addressed during the day were shaped by the results of the Youth Speak 2020 survey which revealed that young people had a number of concerns on their minds, including post-school opportunities, mental health, climate change and the environment.

Youth Resilience Manager Cal Champagne said the energy and positive vibes of the forum reflected the will and determination of young people to take their destiny into their own hands.

“What we heard and felt at the forum was a desire to create real change and a growing understanding of the need for collaboration to achieve this,” Cal said.

“We’re excited about the next leg of the Youth Speak journey – Future Shaper – where all of the big ideas from the forum will be brought together during a two-day camp in July,” he said.

“After that, we will continue with a small working group to design, develop and deliver the recommended change projects with the support of community mentors.

“This is where ideas will start to become reality and we will design initiatives to achieve real and meaningful change.

“Our thanks go to all participants and facilitators, including Headspace, the Funhouse, Campbell Page, The Crossing Land Education Centre, Eden Community Access Centre, PCYC, University of Wollongong and the Bega Valley Innovation Hub.

“We will continue to work together to build on what we have started and encourage our young people to gain confidence and lead the ongoing conversation about a better life for them across the county.”

For more information on Youth Speak and Future Shaper, visit the Council’s website: https://begavalley.nsw.gov.au/community/bega-valley-youth-speak

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