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headspace Hawthorn YAG members attend first Victorian Youth Summit

Youth Summit 5

Hey guys, Alex from the headspace Hawthorn Youth Advisory Group Here! Last Friday myself and two other YAG members attended the first Victorian Youth Summit on behalf of Headspace Hawthorn and it was super interesting. We got to hang out in all these fancy rooms in the MCG and go onto the ground too. We opened with a Welcome to Country ceremony from a local Aboriginal elder and some traditional-modern fusion performances from young Indigenous entertainers, followed by a Q and A panel featuring youth advocates answering live audience questions about youth issues.

We had the opportunity to choose from four morning workshops which each discussed a major youth issue such as housing, homelessness and mental health. We had an address from the Victorian Minister for Youth Affairs who showed great understanding and insight into youth issues. After lunch we had another Q and A panel with another group of young people, which involved a lot of discussion around lowering the voting age to 16 to give young people more of a voice, followed by another workshop on breaking down the drives behind social change to specific issues such as health and connectedness.

There were around 400 young people from various organisations and schools in attendance plus accompanying adults, and there was some really important and valuable discussion which hopefully will be passed on to higher levels of government and allow some changes to be made to benefit people like us in the future.