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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2002 Week 4 Hansard (11 April) . . Page.. 1011 ..

MR CORBELL (continuing):

a contribution but also help to heal and build themselves up if they have been through very difficult and pressing circumstances-not simply through support but through their engagement in cultural and artistic endeavour.

Confest is just one of the programs this week. On Monday I was pleased to launch a forum on planning and young people in Canberra, commissioned through the Youth Coalition of the ACT and involving the Australian Federal Police. That forum looked at public spaces and how young people could be better engaged in the planning process. Much of our public space, particularly shopping centres such as the Canberra Centre and the various malls around the town, is privately owned; yet those areas are very much public places for young people to meet, to gather and to enjoy each other's company. Engaging young people, property developers, the police and the broader community in the planning process for public spaces is extremely important, and this forum has sought to highlight and further the goals there.

A range of activities are taking place in youth week, which finishes next Sunday. If you have not been able to get involved, I would encourage you to get in touch with the Youth Coalition of the ACT, which has been instrumental in putting together youth week this year, as it has in previous years. It developed a very strong program this year. I would encourage everyone to get involved not only as a way of recognising the contribution that young people make to our community, a recognition that should not occur simply in youth week but should occur throughout the year, but also as a way of realising and acknowledging the significant contribution that young people make every day in our community.

MS GALLAGHER: I have a supplementary question. Minister, can you tell the Assembly the name of the winner of the Young Canberra Citizen of the Year award announced during the launching of youth week and what the award aims to achieve?

MR CORBELL: We had an exceptional winner of the Young Canberra Citizen of the Year award this year in Jonathon Lovell, who is currently a student at the Australian National University. When I was asked to approve his nomination I was given a copy of his academic transcript and it made me blush. I do not think that there has been anything much below a high distinction in the four years he has been at the Australian National University.

Jonathon's contribution was acknowledged not simply for his academic endeavour but, just as importantly, for his contribution to the community as well as his excellence in sporting fields. Of particular note was Jonathon's contribution in helping families and refugees new to our community. He has been involved in helping to mentor and provide support in a grassroots way to families which are supporting refugees in the Canberra community as well as refugees newly arrived in the community. For him to be doing that this year in particular certainly was an issue that well deserved recognition and that was able to be achieved through the Young Canberra Citizen of the Year award.

Two other nominees received special mention. The quality of the nominations this year was very high. I am sure that Jonathon Lovell will be a superb ambassador for young people in Canberra throughout the coming year.

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