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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2018 Week 04 Hansard (Tuesday, 10 April 2018) . . Page.. 1178 ..

The 2018 ACT Youth Week events include Black Mountain School’s Youth Arts and Music Festival for All, the Dickson College ACT Youth Week expo and barbecue, an East African community youth sports and game day, and a sunset festival with the YWCA. Free events funded by the ACT government are occurring across Canberra and are open to all young people. These include Phillip Ice Skating Centre hosting “Skate it Out” in Woden and Back Bone BMX hosting BMX clinics in Belconnen and Gungahlin.

I encourage everyone to get involved in ACT Youth Week 2018. This could involve attending a local event celebrating the contribution of young people, promoting events happening across the city or even just taking the time to listen to a young Canberran about their passions and the challenges facing their generation.

MS CHEYNE: Minister, how do the Young Canberra Citizen of the Year awards, as part of national Youth Week, celebrate the achievements of young Canberrans?

MS STEPHEN-SMITH: I thank Ms Cheyne for her supplementary question. Of course, I will be very pleased to announce the Young Canberra Citizen of the Year awards on Friday. These awards are now in their 29th year, so they are somewhat older than the impressive young Canberrans who are acclaimed by them.

The awards recognise and celebrate young people aged between 12 and 25 years for their personal achievements and for their contribution to the Canberra community. The awards are an opportunity to recognise the innovation, diversity, talent and tenacity of both young individuals and groups across four categories this year: Young Canberra Citizen of the Year, personal achievement, individual community service, and group achievement.

Each year young Canberrans are nominated for their remarkable and inspiring efforts across a range of fields, including community work, the arts, sport and the environment. I would like to take a moment to reflect on the calibre of previous young Canberra citizens we have honoured. The 2017 recipient, Mustafa Ehsan, was acknowledged as an exceptional role model who champions inclusion in the Canberra community through sport. The 2016 recipient, Jordan Kerr, established the National Youth Council of Australia. The 2015 recipient—someone I am sure we are all very familiar with—Nip Wijewickrema, was acknowledged for her contribution to the community, including her work in establishing socially sustainable florist GG’s Flowers, which employs and supports people with disability.

Each of these young people is an inspirational and remarkable young person in our community. I am sure that this year’s recipients will be no different. I look forward to seeing who will be this year’s Young Canberra Citizen of the Year at the awards ceremony on Friday.

MS ORR: Minister, why is it important that we recognise the contributions and challenges of young people in our community?

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