Nillumbik’s youth have a new voice with the appointment of the inaugural Nillumbik Youth Council.
The 15 members of the Youth Council are Taj Andreetta, Joseph Bowman, Cavan Cartwright, Bailey Cumming, Orianna Edmonds, Kirra Imbriano, Imogen Jaques, Brianne Keogh, Maali Kerta-Rice, Maverick Knight, Jack Linehan, Katie O’Brien, Indiana Sandwell, Fieke van der Kamp, and Lachlan Wadsworth.
Fieke van der Kamp has been elected the first Youth Mayor and Jack Linehan the first Youth Deputy Mayor.
Aged 15 to 25 years, the Youth Councillors are passionate about their community and will represent the views, ideas and needs of young people.
Youth Mayor Fieke van der Kamp said she wanted to make a difference in the community and the new Youth Council would help achieve lasting positive change.
“I’m passionate about the environment and reversing climate change, and also about allowing others to find, do and have access to whatever they are passionate about, whether it be art, music, drama, sport or nature,” she said.
“The most beautiful things happen when people do what they are passionate about.”
Nillumbik Mayor Peter Perkins congratulated the inaugural members on their appointment.
“I’m really pleased we now a Youth Council which will advocate on behalf of the young people of Nillumbik,” Cr Perkins said.
“I look forward to working with you all and hearing your ideas on how we can best support our youth.”
Cr Ben Ramcharan, who is the Councillor representative on the committee, said he was excited to appoint a Youth Council.
“I’m 25 years old, I was 24 when elected. As a young person, I know that young people today have a lot to worry about from rising house prices to the issue of climate change,” Cr Ramcharan said.
“It’s critical we listen to young people and give them a voice.
“I would like to thank everyone who nominated, we could only accept 15, but the unsuccessful applicants will have other opportunities to be involved with Council.”
Over the next 12 months the young people will be meeting fortnightly and working collaboratively to design and implement a youth engagement process that will seek to understand key issues and opportunities for young people in Nillumbik.
They will then take the key findings from that engagement process and co-develop a Youth Strategy that identifies key priority areas for youth in Nillumbik.