Geelong youth aiming for change

May 30, 2024 BY

City of Greater Geelong major Trent Sullivan (second from right) with Geelong Youth Parliament Team members Phoebe, Daniel and Angelle. Photo: SUPPLIED

A YOUNG Geelong team are now drafting a bill to be in debated in Parliament House as they represent

the city at the Victorian Youth Parliament.

Phoebe, Daniel and Angelle are working on the ‘Improved Access and Suitable Care to Mental Health Bill 2024’, using their leadership and advocacy experience.

Run by YMCA Youth Services, the Victorian Youth Parliament provides peopled aged between 16 and 25 a platform to use their voices and influence state legislation on issues important to young people.

In the past, teams have influenced legislation on issues including mental health, education and the environment.

“The program gives me and the other young people in my team a chance to work together on an issue which we all care about, as well as learning important skills and being able to develop networks to take to the parliament,” Youth Parliament team member Daniel said.

“We hope we can play a part in helping people in Geelong and all across Victoria lead better lives and inspire other local people to get involved.”

The Victorian Youth Parliament program includes a range of activities all leading up to the event highlight, a sitting week in July at Parliament House, where teams debate and vote on their bills.

Bills that get passed are presented to Minister for Youth before being distributed to the relevant state Members.

City of Greater Geelong mayor Trent Sullivan said the program was a wonderful opportunity for youth in the region.

“The ambition and accomplishments of the Geelong Youth Parliament team is inspiring, and I congratulate them on their dedication to make a positive impact at a parliamentary level,” he said.

“It’s more than just a program; it’s a catalyst for change and gives our region’s young people the tools, confidence and platform to turn their ideas into legislation.”

For more information on the Victorian Youth Parliament, head to vicyouth.ymca.org.au