Page 1670 - Week 05 - Wednesday, 1 April 2009

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(a) the importance of providing opportunities for young Canberrans to reach their potential;

(b) the events currently occurring around the ACT and nationally as part of Youth Week 2009; and

(c) the success of Youth Week for highlighting the achievements and concerns of young people; and

(2) calls on the Government to:

(a) commit to ongoing support for Youth Week and other youth events; and

(b) produce an updated ACT Young People’s plan in order to provide a framework for the implementation of adequate and appropriate youth-centred and youth-oriented policy, services and programs across the whole of Government.

This week is Youth Week. The theme for 2009 is “Make a move”, an idea which can encompass many aspects of our lives. Youth Week is a national annual celebration of young people and has been celebrated in various states and territories for more than a decade. It brings together an assortment of events, programs and activities for young people. I would like to thank the Youth Coalition of the ACT for coordinating a wonderful week of activities. These diverse and engaging activities have been organised and will be run by many young people and workers from many community youth services.

As a former director of the Youth Coalition for a decade, I was involved in organising Youth Week programs. It was a wonderful chance to work with young people. Sometimes that was helping them to run an event, letting them go and run their own event or linking them up with organisations who could run the events that they had identified that they wanted to see out there on the program. I was very lucky to work with such passionate, creative and vibrant young people as well as dedicated staff teams at the Youth Coalition and in the many youth organisations who got involved in Youth Week.

On Friday last week, I attended the Young Canberra Citizen of the Year awards. Congratulations to Daisy Sanders and the other worthy recipients. I would also like to acknowledge the recipients of the group award, the Lanyon youth centre’s youth council. This has been a highly active youth council for many years that has been well supported by the YWCA, who run the youth centre.

The Youth Week 2009 program offers a great range of events around Canberra—and indeed around the country—including the successful expo last Friday night in Garema Place. The ACT Greens held a stall at the expo and asked young people to tell us what they thought were the big issues. Of the young people who responded, the three main issues were better public transport, cheaper education and cheaper housing—all things that the ACT Greens are committed to achieving.

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