Sunshine Coast Council’s very first Youth Council has been formed with the diverse group’s inaugural meeting kicking off this month (23 June) at Bokarina.
Fifteen members make up the Youth Council and come from many areas of the region, including Caloundra, Maroochydore, Buderim, Mapleton and Marcoola, while representing diverse interests such as mental health, human rights, justice and the environment.
Sunshine Coast Council Community Portfolio Councillor David Law said he was proud to see strong interest in the two-year program.
“The purpose of the Youth Council is to educate participants about local government and, importantly, provide an opportunity for its members to advocate for projects and issues that are meaningful for our region,” Cr Law said.
“We received many worthy applications for a spot on the Youth Council. Congratulations to everyone who was successful and who had a go.
“This two-year program is one of our Sunshine Coast Community Strategy 2019-2041 actions. Council is very supportive of the Youth Council and I’m pleased to see there will be various opportunities to connect to different sectors within council and the community, including councillors and community leaders.
“These connections will ensure members of the Youth Council remain connected to the broader community and provide opportunities to represent youth in a considered way.”
Gunter Nolle, 18, of Caloundra applied for the Youth Council as he has a keen interest in inclusivity and cultural diversity.
“As an immigrant I feel adopted by our community and am thankful to be a part of it,” Mr Nolle said.
“I am honoured to be part of a program that allows me to give back to the community.
“With an increasing influx of people moving to the Sunshine Coast it’s important we continue to build on a culture of inclusiveness.”
Nambour Christian College student Evie Marshall, 15, said she was keen to advocate on behalf of her peers plus those who were affected by chronic diseases including cystic fibrosis.
“I understand the voices of young people are important in shaping the future of our beautiful region and cohesive community,” Ms Marshall said.
The Sunshine Coast Youth Council is designed for people aged 15 to 24 years old. They meet monthly and will be assigned different roles and responsibilities during the coming months.