Youth can shape their future

Published Thursday, 30th November 2017

Bring It On! Festival vounteers
Mayor Frank Carbone and Youth Advisory Committee members with one of the Monster Trucks that will be at Bring It On! Festival this year.

Fairfield City Council is calling upon members of the community to have their say and contribute to the development of Council’s next Fairfield Youth Strategy (2018 – 2022).

Mayor of Fairfield City Frank Carbone said he encourages all residents to have their say.

“Young people are the future leaders of our community and we need to empower them utilising a variety of opportunities around education, mentoring, recreation, volunteering and leadership to become the best person they can be,” Mayor Carbone said.

“The Strategy will outline Council’s commitment to young people and will guide us in determining the services, resources and facilities required to make sure young people in Fairfield City have the opportunities they deserve.

“Council has already begun consultation with youth work professionals and schools to gain initial feedback for inclusion in the Strategy.

“We are also seeking input from everyone in the community, especially our younger residents, to help guide what the new Strategy will be.”

Fairfield City has a younger than average population, with one-fifth of residents, or 37,444 people, aged 12 to 24 in the 2016 Census.

“18.9% of our City’s population are young people aged 12 to 24, which is higher than NSW overall where only 16.1% of people are in this age bracket,” Mayor Carbone said.

“Council is proud of Fairfield City’s youth. They are outstanding young leaders, invested in volunteering and have great pride in our community and its diversity.

“Council will continue to invest in our City’s young people by giving them ample opportunity to learn, have fun and connect with the community.

“We ticked off a number of great wins for young people in our City as part of our current Strategy, including the construction of the $8.5 million Fairfield Youth and Community Centre and securing inspiring guest speakers at events such as adventurer James Mastrisson and Australia’s Youth Representative to the United Nations Paige Burton.”

Council continues to provide an opportunity for young people to more easily have their voices heard at a local government level by recruiting up to 20 new young people annually to form the Fairfield Youth Advisory Committee (YAC).

Fairfield YAC work alongside Council on a number initiatives that benefit the wider youth community, such as contributing to the organisation of Council’s extensive Youth Week program, which includes the largest Youth Week event in NSW, Bring It On! Festival.

“YAC provide their ideas for Council’s dedicated Youth Leadership and Mentoring Program, funded to provide local young people with greater opportunities to improve confidence, gain leadership skills and inspire them to reach their full potential,” Mayor Carbone said.

Mayor Carbone said that young people face unique challenges, which is why Council continues to support the City’s youth.

“Australians are facing a number of social challenges and young people are often among the most vulnerable when it comes to access to education and employment, health and wellbeing, housing security and more. In our City there’s also socio economic disadvantage and potential cultural barriers on top,” Mayor Carbone said. 

“Given the unique challenges young people face, Council has continued to push for greater youth representation in NSW Parliament. Currently no NSW ministers have a dedicated youth affairs portfolio, which Council believes is of great loss to youth equity.

“In addition to advocating to the NSW Government, Council will continue to provide our City’s young people with opportunities, facilities and services.

“We need as many opinions and aspirations as possible to help Council develop a Strategy that will make Fairfield City the best it can be for our young people.

“Please visit Council’s website to have your say. The future success of our young people is a responsibility of the entire community.”

The community is encouraged to visit www.fairfieldcity.nsw.gov.au/youthstrategy before Monday 19 February 2018 to provide feedback that will inform Council’s Youth Strategy (2018-2022).