Young gamechangers recognised at Council's youth awards

Published on 26 August 2020

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A volunteer from the Horsley Park RFS who played a key role in the 2019/2020 NSW bushfires, a mentor for young students transitioning to online learning during COVID-19, and an advocate for marginalised young people are among the winners of the 2020 Fairfield City Mayor’s Youth Achievement Awards.

Held by Fairfield City Council, the awards recognise young individuals and groups who have excelled in the sports, arts, business, humanitarian, and community activism arenas.

The awards were presented at last night’s Council Meeting by Fairfield City Mayor Frank Carbone. He said it was refreshing to hear how the City’s young people were inspiring community pride, and strengthening community life in Fairfield City.

“The awards are a great opportunity for the community to recognise and celebrate our young people’s diverse talents, achievements and contributions,” Mayor Carbone said.

“By volunteering and leading significant projects in our community, young people are not only making a positive contribution, they are building essential skills and attributes for life.

"Our young people are tomorrow's leaders and innovators. It’s more important we shine the light on their achievements during these challenging times to encourage them and show them that we are behind them.”

The winners for each award category are as follows:

Community Spirit Award – Lina Yokhana
Horsley Park RFS volunteer playing a key role in the 2019/2020 NSW bushfires, and in educating the community about bush fire safety and bush fire mitigation.

Creating Change Award – Jack Jaramillo
Creating positive change in the community through advocacy for youth homelessness in Australia.

Sportsmanship Award – Nikola Skataric
Demonstrates an outstanding level of commitment to football resulting in selection for Sydney FC despite personal setbacks.

Leadership Award – Thanh Luong
Displays leadership in promoting awareness into the mental health of young people, and access to health services.

Creative Arts Award – Shawn Spina
A creative role model for young people whose 2019 short film ‘Prone to the Drone’ premiered at Sydney Film Festival and has gone on to travel across Australia and internationally.

New Beginnings Award – Nadeen Tomena
Keen to help others through the uptake of leadership roles at the Intensive English Centre in Cabramatta, the youth group of a local church, and in refugee advocacy.

Entrepreneurial Talent Award – Martin S Phabmixay
Founder of Stepping Stones Education; tutoring high school students in Mathematics, English and Science. Currently serves as mentor for business start-ups through the USYD Genesis Program.

Phoenix Award – Emily Khochaba
Actively volunteers for the Salvos Red Shield Appeal, Fairfield Relay for Life, Christmas Trolley Drive and is involved in various fundraisers.

Outstanding Youth Group – Bonnyrigg Youth Council
A youth leadership group who work towards positive outcomes for the community while developing the skills and capacity of its members.

Calm in Crisis Award – Abigail Sio
Demonstrated mentorship qualities by helping young students transition to online learning during COVID-19.

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