Horsham Rural City Council (HRCC) and the Foundation for Young Australians launched the Youth Mayors Program on Monday 14 November at Council Offices. Councillors and representatives from the Foundation for Young Australians (FYA) were in attendance, both pledging their commitment to the program.
A new partnership between HRCC and FYA will back young people in the region to take on a more active role in local democracy and decision making.
The launch was followed by a co-design workshop involving young people, Council staff and FYA representatives.
Building on the foundations of the existing HRCC youth council, the Young Mayors program will support people aged 17 and under to get elected to the youth council. The program will give young people an active role in local democracy and decision making.
FYA director Molly Whelan said that this will give young people more decision making capacity over issues that impact them.
“This program puts young people in the driver’s seat, ensuring that council policies and programs better reflect the concerns, needs and desires of local young people.”
“This is about providing young people a platform so they can lean into seeing the changes around them, particularly around social issues and projects that address them.”
The Young Mayors program provides training, mentoring and money to run local projects and campaigns and give youth councils a platform to take action.
HRCC Youth Services Planning and Engagement Officer Louise Kelly said she knew Horsham youth councillors were interested in seeking doing more.
“Our youth councillors have made an incredible contribution to the Horsham community through event and community planning.”
“Young Mayors will bring this to life as an active part of our local government, with opportunities to learn about and participate in the systems that govern their lives, and influence decisions that impact their community.”