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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2016 Week 3 Hansard (10 March) . .

Page.. 1019..

Lions Club—youth of the year quest

MR COE (Ginninderra) (6.08): I rise this evening to speak about the Lions Canberra regional final for the youth of the year quest, which was held last Thursday at the Gold Creek Country Club. I have spoken on previous occasions in the Assembly about the great work done by Lions clubs in our community.

The youth of the year quest is run by Lions clubs and is designed to encourage, foster and develop leadership in conjunction with other citizenship qualities in young people, at the stage when they are about to enter employment or higher education. The qualities which the Lions clubs seek to promote, apart from academic attainments, include leadership, personality, sportsmanship, public speaking and good citizenship. The development of these qualities will help to ensure that our young people are equipped to take an active and constructive role in the community.

By nurturing these qualities in potential leaders, the Lions clubs also aim to promote outstanding role models for the youth of Australia and improve the confidence levels of young men and women. The students meet in fellowship and have the opportunity of open discussion, exchange of ideas and to meet committed people who are involved in serving the community.

Entry is open to young people who are attending or have attended a high school or secondary school or equivalent standard of school in any other educational establishment, in the Lions year in which the national final is to be conducted, who are over the age of 15 and under 19 years of age as at 30 June, in the year of the final.

The main activities involved in the running of Lions youth of the year include initial promotion in schools and local communities, judging of candidates, selection and announcement of the national winner, and arrangements for the winner's overseas travel and attendance at an international youth camp. The youth of the year quest begins in June-July and culminates in final judging and the announcement of the winners at the multiple district convention, normally held in May.

Last week's regional judging was attended by a number of senior Lions Club representatives, including district youth of the year chairman Kevin McInerney and his wife Gail, the president of the Gungahlin Lions Club, Graham Erickson, and his wife Robyn, the zone chair, Beverly von Stein and Carl von Stein, past district governor, as well as by Mick Richardson, chair of the youth of the year quest.

The judges were Julia Hammond, area manager of NAB, Julia Hesse, former chair of the Canberra Philharmonic Society and the Canberra Genealogical Society, and Peter Batley, an AFP volunteer in policing who has had a long career in the RAF and RAAF police.

Both entrants in the regional final were very impressive young people with a lot to offer and with a great future in front of them. Tessa Mills, a student at UC Senior Secondary College, represented the Belconnen Lions Club, and Joshua Guest, a student at Melba Copland Secondary School, represented the Gungahlin Lions Club.

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